My father recently visited me in Berlin. When he arrived, he drove up our driveway in a Kia 4WD (Korean car), which he had nothing but praise for. It was a brand previously unheard of but now my father prefers Kia above all others when it comes to renting cars. The last time I checked, I was still buying Japanese brands. Sony television and surround sound (YES), Panasonic DVD camera (YES), Casio translation device (YES), but strangely as I looked at recent purchases… it struck me! Samsung Monitor, LG phone, Logitech mini speaker…nothing was Japanese.
So why then are brands important and how do we know they are going to be around in five years time? There are many reasons why we buy certain brands over others but one of the most important in an ever changing world should be the ‘resale value’. It’s important to not only buy brands that are ‘good quality’ but to buy brands that will also be around in five years time. I noticed this recently when I sold a used Apple iPhone 3G on eBay. It sold for twice as much as I expected and had three times as many ‘auction followers’ than anything else I’ve sold. So whatever brands you buy today, be it Japanese, Korean, Chinese or even German; make sure the compamy will be around in a few years time or you might find the brand worthless. According to Spiegel Online, Panasonic and Sony may be around but Sharp might not be.