· Total value of UAE brands exceeds that of all countries, including KSA
· Only one of 16 UAE brands decreased in value this year
· Emirates remains the Middle East’s most valuable brand, growing 17%
Every year, leading brand valuation and strategy consultancy Brand Finance puts thousands of the world’s top brands to the test to determine which are the most powerful and most valuable. The top 50 brands from the Middle East are featured in the Brand Finance Middle East 50.
The UAE continues to perform exceptionally well, both against other countries from the region but also the world at large. The total value of the 16 UAE brands in the list is US$27.9 bn, more than that of any other country. Despite having the most brands (21) Saudi Arabia’s total is lower, at US$26 billion.
Emirates has consistently dominated the Brand Finance Middle East 50, with a brand value far in excess of both direct competitors and brands from other sectors. It continues to soar. Brand value growth of 17% takes its total to over US$7.7 billion and sees it pull further ahead of the field. The airline continues to invest in ventures that enhance its brand’s reputation. In mid-2015, Emirates spent US$20m to secure ‘Friends’ star Jennifer Aniston in an advertising campaign, which appears to have translated into improving brand strength. The scores for metrics such as preference, satisfaction and recommendation have all improved this year but those most closely tied to advertising, familiarity and consideration, have improved the most.
Emaar Properties is the 5th most valuable brand in the UAE, and 13th in the region. The company behind the Burj Khalifa saw a 42% increase in its brand value this year. Despite recent uncertainty in Dubai’s property market and the expectation of a drop in housing prices, Emaar Properties reached a total revenue of US$898m in Q3 of 2015. The company attributes a portion of their huge success to its international expansion. The international outlook of UAE brands, in contrast to KSA, is part of the reason it continues to dominate Brand Finance’s list despite its smaller population and economy.
RAKBank is the only brand to have decreased in value. Bad debt incurred amidst slow economic growth affected profitability and was the principal cause of the 19% decline to US$475m. RAKBank’s loan impairments have hindered the bank’s ability to combat economic pressures and have also had a slight impact on brand strength, with its brand rating downgraded from AA- to A+.