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Emirati Brands are Jewel in the Crown of Middle East

22 January 2019
This article is more than 2 years old.

London - Abu Dhabi, 22/1/2019

  • New entrant ADNOC with brand value of US$8.9bn is the Middle East’s most valuable brand
  • Etisalat sets record as first Middle Eastern group to break US$10bn barrier as per its wider portfolio value, retains position as most valuable MENA portfolio brand
  • Dubai’s flagship carrier Emirates valued at US$6.3bn scales up
  • STC flying flag for Saudi Arabian brands with 7% brand value growth since last year to a brand value of US$7.1bn

View the Brand Finance Global 500 2019 report here

The Middle East is home to 5 of the world’s 500 most valuable brands, with notable performances from Abu Dhabi’s ADNOC and Etisalat, according to the latest Brand Finance Global 500 report. Growing on average 13% in brand value since 2018, Middle Eastern brands are cementing their place on the global branding scene across a variety of sectors: oil and gas, telecoms, airlines and banks.

David Haigh, CEO of Brand Finance, said:

“It is a real testament to the leadership of the United Arab Emirates that Emirati brands are leading the charge for the Middle East, amongst the world’s most valuable brands. As celebrations for the ‘Year of Zayed’ wrap up, we recognise the achievements, will and determination of the UAE’s Founding Father, the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan.”

ADNOC makes an entrance

Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) is a new entrant to the Brand Finance Global 500, boasting a brand value of US$8.9bn and announcing itself on the world stage as a leading oil and gas brand. Since launching its new unified brand in 2017 and bringing the brand’s various subsidiaries under a common identity, ADNOC has amplified the scale of its business and contribution to the UAE’s economy.

ADNOC has opened its first fuel stations in Dubai and Saudi Arabia, announced plans to increase its oil production capacity to 4million barrels per day by the end of 2020 and has also been making progress on its integrated 2030 Strategy, which is aimed at balancing market conditions with long-term future growth.

As the first regional oil and gas brand to be featured in the Brand Finance Global 500, ADNOC announced itself on the world stage, having entered the global capital markets for the first time two years ago. ADNOC’s listing in its fuel distribution unit was touted as the largest IPO on the Abu Dhabi stock exchange in the past decade. The Abu Dhabi oil and gas brand is focused on responding to changes taking place in the world’s energy markets and unlocking huge reserves of previously uneconomical gas that will ultimately put the UAE on a path to gas self-sufficiency and transition the nation to become a net exporter of natural gas.

Etisalat sets new record-breaking brand portfolio value

Emirati telecoms giant Etisalat remains the most valuable portfolio brand in the MENA region, boasting an impressive portfolio of brands such as Etisalat, Mobily, Ufone, Maroc Telecom and PTCL. Etisalat has seen an 8% growth since last year, resulting in it also becoming the first Middle Eastern brand to break the US$10 billion barrier in terms of its wider portfolio value.

Operating in 15 countries across Asia, the Middle East and Africa, Etisalat’s success can also be attributed to its continued efforts in developing its customer loyalty programmes, sports sponsorship commitments and role as a digital partner of Dubai’s Expo2020 showcase. As the premier digital partner of Dubai’s Expo2020 showcase, Etisalat is preparing to deliver the event’s visitors and delegates with a cutting edge and immersive digital experience.

Sports sponsorships provide an international platform through which Etisalat can connect with its loyal customers, sharing and supporting their interests and passions. Alongside its high-profile sponsorship of English Premier League football team Manchester City, Etisalat has also successfully sponsored the UAE National Paralympics Committee at the Indonesia 2018 Asian Para Games. These strategic sponsorships align with the brand’s priorities of being at the forefront of major sporting events.

Emirates Airlines swoops up ranking

With a solid brand value growth of 18% since last year, flagship airline Emirates has cemented its place as the world’s 329th most valuable brand. The airline’s success is a nod to the brand’s ability in attracting passengers to Dubai as a travel hub. Emirates continues to offer ideal connection routes to passengers across the globe who are transiting in Dubai before continuing with onward travel. In the past year, the airline has successfully launched new passenger services to London Stansted and Santiago Chile, as well as introducing a new linked service from Dubai via Bali to Auckland.

In addition to measuring overall brand value, Brand Finance also evaluates the relative strength of brands through the Brand Strength Index (BSI) – a balanced scorecard of factors including marketing investment, customer familiarity, staff satisfaction, and corporate reputation. Along with the level of revenues, brand strength is a crucial driver of brand value.

According to these criteria, with a BSI score of 85.8 out of 100 and a corresponding AAA brand rating, Emirates remains the strongest Middle Eastern brand. World-renowned for its brand loyalty programme, Emirates has further developed its flydubai partnership, which now combines both airlines’ loyalty programmes under Emirates Skywards.

Brand Finance Global 500 Key Findings

  • Ferrari accelerates to claim the title of the world’s strongest brand, with a score of 94.8 out of 100 and an AAA+ rating
  • Three of the Big Four brands: Deloitte, PwC, and EY, post an elite AAA+ brand strength rating, while KPMG trails behind
  • Amazon defends prime position as the world’s most valuable brand following 25% growth to US$187.9 billion, with Apple and Google placed 2nd and 3rd
  • As tech brands lead the ranking, Microsoft makes a comeback to top 5 with 47% brand value growth, while Facebook sees its brand strength tarnished by scandals
  • China’s answer to Netflix, iQiyi is the world’s fastest-growing brand of 2019, up a whopping 326% year on year, three times the 105% hike by its US counterpart
  • Brands from China climb up the ranking as the country’s total brand value in the Brand Finance Global 500 breaks US$1 trillion


Note to Editors
Every year, leading valuation and strategy consultancy Brand Finance values the world’s biggest brands. The 500 most valuable brands in the world are included in the Brand Finance Global 500 2019 report.

Brand value is understood as the net economic benefit that a brand owner would achieve by licensing the brand in the open market. Brand strength is the efficacy of a brand’s performance on intangible measures relative to its competitors.

Additional insights, more information about the methodology, as well as definitions of key terms are available in the Brand Finance Global 500 2019 report.

Brand Finance helped craft the internationally recognised standard on Brand Valuation – ISO 10668, and the recently approved standard on Brand Evaluation – ISO 20671.

Data compiled for the Brand Finance league tables and reports are provided for the benefit of the media and are not to be used for any commercial or technical purpose without written permission from Brand Finance.


Media Contacts

Konrad Jagodzinski
Konrad Jagodzinski
Communications Director
Brand Finance
Florina Cormack-Loyd
Florina Cormack-Loyd
Senior Communications Manager
Brand Finance

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