This Atlas of Leading Spanish Brands is an excellent example of what at the Spain Brand we have endeavoured to achieve: to broadcast the excellence that in so many aspects characterises modern day Spain, yet is often hidden by stereotypes that are firmly anchored in the public’s imagination but that no longer project a true image of our reality.
Indeed, the richness of our history and our culture, the power and extension of our language, the attractiveness of our climate, our geography and our hospitality have been projecting an image of a bright and appealing country in many ways, but which is limited in terms of business and with little importance on an international economic and technological level. However, this does not reflect the reality. For many years, Spain has been working through the ranks in the classification of the most developed and advanced countries in the world, currently occupying a well-deserved position at number twelve.
The new business reality of Spain has contributed fundamentally to this. This reality was forged with effort and resilience throughout the second half of the twentieth century and in the first two decades of the twenty-first century the Spanish business sector has achieved a huge degree of internationalisation and leadership based on its dynamism, competitiveness, adaptability and innovation. These are not characteristics that usually first spring to the minds of foreign observers when describing Spain, which can only be ascribed, at best, to their lack of knowledge.
If that is the case, it must be acknowledged that part of the blame must be shouldered by the Spanish citizens themselves for having failed to effectively convey the undoubted hallmarks that characterise our brilliant modernity. We also have to consider the possibility that the lack of knowledge attributable to foreigners is also widespread in Spain.
So this Atlas of Leading Spanish brands is an instrument whose appearance we welcome with satisfaction and optimism from the Spain Brand. It not only provides important information about our leading companies, but also provides an analysis and insight into our international presence, essential to properly place Spain on today’s global map. And this contributes to enhance the image of our country both within and outside our borders.
The image of a country is the result of the image projected by each and every one of the individuals, agents and entities that make up that country. And from that perspective, an image of Spain that disregards its rich, dynamic and powerful current business aspect, is not only imprecise and incomplete, but is seriously damaging since it does not accurately reflect our reality. The image of Spain is an intangible asset that is very difficult to quantify, but it has an undeniable and important economic value, with an immediate reflection on the prosperity of our businesses (job creators) and our society as a whole, and is an essential component of the influence we have worldwide.
I am sure that this Atlas will contribute effectively to enhancing the image of Spain, and from here I would like to thank the Leading Brands of Spain Forum, a pioneer and main partner of the Spain Brand for this initiative.
CARLOS ESPINOSA DE LOS MONTEROS. High Commissioner for the Spain Brand