Cape Town: City Performance, Brand Strength and Reputation

Cape Town in South Africa: often referred to as the Mother City, Cape Town boasts a breath of fresh air, thanks to its abundant vistas and natural sites of scenic beauty, spread around the popular destination. But how attractive is Cape Town as a city for international talent, visitors or investors? How does it compare to other cities in Africa and beyond? Let’s explore deeper how Cape Town positions itself on the world stage, drawing insights from data provided by TPBO partners and other reputable institutions.

Let’s take a closer look at: 

  • Cape Town’s competitiveness and financial performance
  • Livability: Cape Town’s appeal for digital nomads and locals
  • Cape Town’s brand strength and global attractiveness

Cape Town’s competitiveness and financial performance

How attractive is Cape Town as a place to work and do business? 

The Global Financial Centres Index 34 ranks Cape Town 91st, a drop of 18 positions from the previous ranking. It is currently sitting right behind Nairobi (90th) and Warsaw (92nd). Cape Town currently holds the 13th place out of 15 centers in the African and Middle Eastern region.

According to 2thinknow’s Innovation Cities Index 2022-2023 Cape Town ranks 282nd, a jump of 52 positions from the previous ranking. The city now sits right behind Modena in Italy (281st) and Kawasaki in Japan (283rd).


Cape Town’s brand strength and global attractiveness

Which subfactors hurt and help the brand of Cape Town?

Kearney’s 2023 Global Cities Report ranks Cape Town 84th, a drop of four positions from the previous ranking. It currently sits in between Chengdu (83rd) and Saint Petersburg (85th). Moreover, the city ranks 128th in the Global Cities Outlook, a drop of six positions since the previous ranking.

According to Brand Finance’s City Index 2023, Cape Town ranks 60th in the global ranking with a score of 62.9/100.


Livability: Cape Town’s appeal for digital nomads and locals

Which aspects of Cape Town’s urban living make it an attractive place to live, work and study?

The Mercer Quality of Living City Ranking places Cape Town 102nd, sitting in between Kaohsiung (101st) and Panama City (103rd). The Mercer Cost of Living Ranking ranks Cape Town 210th, a drop of 16 positions since the previous ranking. It currently sits behind Vientiane (209th), and above Kolkata (211th). The cost living survey reports that factors such as currency fluctuations, cost inflation for goods and services, and instability of accommodation prices are key to determine the cost of expat packages for employees on international assignment.

The Arcadis Sustainability City Index 2022 ranks Cape Town 89th overall, sitting in between Chennai (88th) and Bengaluru (90th). Cape Town’s pillar rankings are the following: Planet 72nd, People 93rd, Profit 88th.


Last updated in January 2024. More city benchmarking insights, profiles and reports in our City Observatory.


Enjoyed our snapshot of global rankings and indices on Cape Town’s city performance, its sustainability, talent attractiveness, brand strength and reputation? Thanks for sharing!

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