Canadian Tire tops Google as most admired company

Leger's annual survey saw the retailer move from number three into the number one position this year.

There’s a new leader on Leger’s annual ranking of Canada’s most-admired companies, with Canadian Tire clinching the top spot and beating out long-standing incumbent Google.

The market research company’s annual reputation study includes a survey of 262 companies across 29 business sectors, with each evaluated by around 2,100 English and French-speaking respondents aged 18 or older. Leger conducted a total of more than 30,000 interviews from Dec. 19 to Feb. 1.

Canadian Tire was named the country’s most admired company this year, beating out Google, which has led the pack for several years. Meanwhile, an Ipsos annual list of most influential Canadian brands, released in February, placed Google at number one. Canadian Tire did not make that list.

Rounding out the top five for Leger were Dollarama, Shoppers Drug Mart and Sony. The top ten list of companies, alongside their 2018 rankings, can be found below.

The rankings are calculated based on a score achieved by comparing the number of negative and positive opinions consumers have about the brand. Canadian Tire achieved a score of 81 – one higher than Google – with 87% of respondents having a positive opinion of the brand.

In per-category rankings, Molson Coors, Telus and Aurora Cannabis landed in the number one position of their categories (breweries, telecommunications and cannabis, respectively), Sony was named most admired electronics and technology brand, A&W the top restaurant and Interac the top bank or credit company.

While still outside of the top ten, Tim Hortons recovered some after falling sharply in last year’s standings. It landed in the number 33 spot overall, up 17 spots from last year (in 2017, it ranked number 4 overall).

New this year, Leger also measured employer branding, placing Microsoft at the top of that list, with Google coming in a close second. The additional ranking comes as brands’ “margin of error to attract and retain young talent is nonexistent” as a result of intense competition in the labour market, according to Leger president Jean-Marc Léger.

The 10 most admired companies in Canada (with 2018 ranking)

1. Canadian Tire (3)
2. Google (1)
3. Dollarama (5)
4. Shoppers Drug Mart (2)
5. Sony (4)
6. Kellogg’s (8)
7. Microsoft (6)
8. Amazon
9. Samsung (5)
10. Costco Wholesale