MEC, Telus among most trusted brands from B.C.: study

Seventh annual report reveals West Coast brands leading the way among restaurants, coffee and more


While outdoor sports co-op MEC might now be foreign-owned, that hasn’t eroded Canadians’ trust in the brand founded in B.C.

The Vancouver retailer is the highest-ranked brand from the West Coast in all of Canada, tied for seventh overall, according to this year’s Gustavson Brand Trust Index (GBTI) out of the University of Victoria.

The Canadian Automobile Association (CAA/BCAA/AMA) led all organizations in the annual rankings, released Monday.

The GBTI score is based on surveys conducted with 8,975 Canadians and included results from 391 national and global brands, and 10 regional brands across 33 categories.

When it comes to the tech/software sector, Vancouver-based Telus Corp. (TSX:T) walked away as the most trusted brand in the country.

“Canada’s three biggest telecom firms (Rogers, Bell and Telus) saw increases in trust throughout the pandemic as we became more dependent on them,” the GBTI report stated.

Best Buy Canada Ltd., which is based in Burnaby, was the top-performer in the e- commerce category.

“Amazon[.com Inc. (Nasdaq:AMZN)] may be past its peak in terms of brand trust,” Saul Klein, dean of the Gustavson School of Business at UVic, said in a statement. 

“While more Canadians have used Amazon services than ever before, concerns about the company’s broader impact have resulted in Amazon dropping sharply in this year’s study. [Amazon subsidiary] Whole Foods had always prided itself on its employee culture, but the company’s brand trust and advocacy scores plummeted in 2021, and employee relations may have played a part in that.”

Meanwhile, B.C.-based brands performed well in both the food and beverage sectors.

Inveremere’s Kicking Horse Coffee Co Ltd. tied DavidsTea (Nasdaq:DTEA) for first in the coffee/tea category.

And North Vancouver-based A&W Food Services of Canada Inc. is considered Canada’s most-trusted restaurants/take-out brand.

Canada’s Most Trusted Brands for 2021:

1. Canadian Automobile Association (CAA/BCAA/AMA) 

2. Dyson 

3. Lego 

4. Interac (TIE) 

4. President’s Choice (TIE) 

6. Costco 

7. Home Hardware (TIE) 

7. MEC (Mountain Equipment Company) (TIE) 

7. Quaker Oats (TIE) 

10. Lactalis Canada (formerly known as Parmalat) (TIE) 

10. Canadian Tire (TIE) 

10. Indigo/Chapters (TIE)