Infosys tops ACNielsen's Corporate Image Monitor 2006

MUMBAI: Infosys has for the fourth year running, topped the ACNielsen Corporate Reputation Index (CRI), according to the 2006 ACNielsen Corporate Image Monitor.

The Top 20 Corporates and their CRI Ranks in CIM 2006

Two other IT giants -- Wipro and TCS - featured among the top ten 'most favorable companies' along with Infosys, while Information Technology as an industry retains its position as the most reputable sector.

"In its sixth year, the ACNielsen Corporate Image Monitor is well received by organizations across India. The IT sector has gained momentum in India for some years now and is very well perceived by Indians. What is interesting this year is how Auto and Steel companies have started to make their presence felt," said ACNielsen India associate director Prasenjit Das. "This could be attributed to the economic upheaval the country is witnessing, bringing with it an overall positive outlook of the manufacturing sector."

According to the ACNielsen report significant improvements have been seen in the Auto industry for the last two years. In this round, there are two automotive companies - Bajaj Auto (third) and Maruti Udyog (nineth) in the Top Ten of the Corporate Reputation Index. Tata Steel, the only steel manufacturer in the list, has improved significantly from last year.

It is interesting to note that, overall, the impression of the Top 20 companies improved significantly in 2006. The average net image goodwill which the study computes on the basis of the net of positive and net of negative rating on all dimensions for the companies, shows the average Net Image Goodwill of the Top 20 Companies saw a sharp improvement from 23 percent in 2005 to 29 percent in 2006. Companies with sharp improvements this year are Bajaj Auto (from nineth to third position), HLL (from tenth to fourth position) and Tata Steel (from fourteenth to seventh position). ICICI Bank is the sole entrant from the banking sector in the list of Top 10 corporates, states the study.

Meanwhile, respondents were optimistic about the future of all these companies, with most expecting high or stable future growth for almost all the 20 companies studied. The sense of optimism was most buoyant for IT companies, taking the top three places in the 'Opinion about the Future'.

To capture the growing importance of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) across boardrooms in India, the ACNielsen Corporate Image Monitor recently added CSR as an additional measurement dimension. Infosys, Tata Steel and Wipro rated as the three most socially responsible corporations. Tata Steel, well known for its philanthropy, holds a much higher rank in CSR when compared to its overall standing in terms of corporate image (CRI).

"In recent times many companies have engaged in CSR related activities. In India, nearly three quarters (73 per cent) of respondents interviewed feel that companies in India today have become socially more responsible. Rural welfare and poverty eradication, development of health and hygiene, primary education and training are the key areas where people feel companies should take greater responsibility and ownership," added Das.

The ACNielsen Corporate Image Monitor is an annual syndicated study conducted by ACNielsen Org-Marg. The study is conducted and designed to measure key perceptions of the performance of several corporations in India, to help benchmark company image and reputation. The actionable insights provided by the study help companies prioritize policies and chart future growth plans.

The study is a special report measuring the image of a corporate in the mind of the various stakeholders of business for the Top 20 corporates in India, chosen from ET-500 based on market capitalization, sales and assets.

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