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Middle East brand values grow quickly, Aramco remains on top

28 February 2023
This article is more than 1 year old.

View the full Brand Finance Middle East 150 2023 report here

Aramco’s dominance as the most valuable Middle Eastern brand continues

Saudi Arabian oil and gas giant, Aramco (brand value up 4% to US$45.2 billion), remains the most valuable Middle Eastern brand, according to a new report from leading brand valuation consultancy, Brand Finance. Saudi Arabia’s national oil company has benefited from a surge in prices and demand for oil and gas this year.

Etisalat by e& is the strongest brand in the region from any sector, followed by stc, both achieving the prestigious AAA rating

In addition to calculating brand value, Brand Finance also determines the relative strength of brands through a balanced scorecard of metrics evaluating marketing investment, stakeholder equity, and business performance. Compliant with ISO 20671, Brand Finance’s assessment of stakeholder equity incorporates original market research data from over 150,000 respondents in 38 countries and across 31 sectors.

Etisalat by e& (brand value up 4% to US$10.5 billion) has a Brand Strength Index (BSI) score of 89.1 out of 100, making it the strongest brand in the Middle East. Etisalat by e& is a telecoms brand of the global technology group e&. Evolved through a brand identity change last year, Etisalat by e& reflects a tech-driven telecoms brand enabled by superior 5G connectivity; elevated NPS scores due to richer personalised customer interactions; and increased employee satisfaction on account of vigorous company culture making it an attractive employer.

Fellow telecommunications brand stc (brand value up 17% to US$12.3 billion) is the 2nd strongest brand in the Middle East and strongest brand in Saudi Arabia with a Brand BSI score of 87 out of 100 and a corresponding AAA rating. The brand also climbed 25 places in the Global 500 ranking, the most by any Middle Eastern brand in the study, profiting from the robust future growth given its dominance in its home market.

Saudi Arabian banking brand Al-Rajhi Bank (brand value up 32% to US$5.7 billion) is the strongest banking brand in the Middle Eastern region with a Brand Strength Index (BSI) score of 85.5 out of 100 and corresponding AAA rating.

ADNOC is the strongest Oil & Gas Brand in the Middle East, remains the most valuable UAE brand

Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) has seen its Brand Strength Index (BSI) increase to 79.4, retaining its status as the strongest Oil & Gas brand in the region. It is the 2nd most valuable Middle Eastern brand, with a brand value of US$14.2 billion, growing by 11% over the past year.

Saudi Arabian Chemicals Company SABIC (brand value up 1% to US$4.7 billion) is the most valuable chemicals brand in the Middle East. It now has a diverse product offering and looks to further identify opportunities in key end-use applications.

DP World (brand value up 15% to US$1.8 billion) sustained healthy growth and is the most valuable logistics brand in the Middle East. Despite difficult operating conditions, the global logistics brand has continued to deploy technology to create efficient and innovative trade solutions for stakeholders.

QatarEnergy-owned Qatargas is fastest-growing brand, up 147%

Qatargas (brand value up 147% to US$3.1 billion) is one of the world’s leading gas producing brands and is owned by QatarEnergy.  This has effectively constrained supply for many gas users and improved sales for Qatargas.

Dubai based Mashreq (brand value up 35% to US$1 billion) followed closely behind as the third fastest growing brand in the UAE. The brand’s new brand identity, launched in 2022, was part of a wider strategy to realign its offerings as a digital-first financial institution.

Mobily (brand value up 18% to US$1.8 billion) maintained its status as the fastest growing telecoms brand in the Middle East. Mobily integrated telecommunications network is among the largest by coverage in Saudi Arabia and the Middle East.

Middle Eastern Banking brands continue to excel with 28% average year-on-year brand value growth

QNB (brand value up 9% to US$7.7 billion) is the 5th most valuable Middle Eastern brand and most valuable Qatari brand. QNB is also the most valuable Middle Eastern banking brand. QNB has continued to grow this year and retained its position (45th globally) as amongst the most valuable banking brands in the world. This reflects the success of the bank’s efforts to expand its international presence and offering to an increasingly diverse customer base.

Saudi Arabian, Riyad Bank saw an impressive brand value increase, up 42% this year to a brand value of US$1.8 billion, well above the overall average for Saudi banks. Riyad bank undertook a rebranding effort in September 2022 reflecting its commitment to becoming a bank for a new generation that will focus on technology and innovation in line with Saudi Vision 2030.

UAE based FAB (brand value up 19% to US$3.9 billion) was the 3rd most valuable banking brand in the region and the most valuable banking brand in the UAE. The bank had a successful year, recording 7% year-on-year Group net profits.

Saudia remains one-to-watch as it maintains healthy brand value growth

Saudia’s brand value increased 14% year-on-year to US$650 million, further securing itself as a leading Middle Eastern airline operator. In line with the country’s ‘Vision 2030’ plan, significant investment in the airline and country’s aviation infrastructure is likely to see Saudia continue its growth in the coming years.

Global airline, Emirates (brand value up 2% to US$5.1 billion), remains the most valuable Middle Eastern Airline as its brand value increase stabilised. The Airline has continued to communicate is efforts to operate more sustainably and cement its status amongst consumers as a modern and responsible operator.

Top Middle Eastern healthcare facility King Faisal Specialist Hospital and Research Center enters the ranking for the first time

King Faisal Specialist Hospital and Research Center (KFSH&RC) entered the ranking for the first time with a brand value of US$1.1 billion. Its patient-centric offering and world-class facilities have allowed the Academic Medical Centre to build a strong brand perception amongst patients within the Middle East as one of the premier choices for healthcare.

View the full Brand Finance Middle East 150 2023 report here

Media Contacts

Penny Erricker
Communications Executive
Brand Finance

About Brand Finance

Brand Finance is the world’s leading brand valuation consultancy. Bridging the gap between marketing and finance for more than 25 years, Brand Finance evaluates the strength of brands and quantifies their financial value to help organizations of all kinds make strategic decisions.

Headquartered in London, Brand Finance has offices in over 20 countries, offering services on all continents. Every year, Brand Finance conducts more than 5,000 brand valuations, supported by original market research, and publishes over 100 reports which rank brands across all sectors and countries.

Brand Finance also operates the Global Brand Equity Monitor, conducting original market research annually on over 5,000 brands, surveying more than 150,000 respondents across 38 countries and 31 industry sectors. Combining perceptual data from the Global Brand Equity Monitor with data from its valuation database enables Brand Finance to arm brand leaders with the data and analytics they need to enhance brand and business value.

Brand Finance is a regulated accountancy firm, leading the standardization of the brand valuation industry. Brand Finance was the first to be certified by independent auditors as compliant with both ISO 10668 and ISO 20671 and has received the official endorsement of the Marketing Accountability Standards Board (MASB) in the United States.

Definition of Brand

Brand is defined as a marketing-related intangible asset including, but not limited to, names, terms, signs, symbols, logos, and designs, intended to identify goods, services, or entities, creating distinctive images and associations in the minds of stakeholders, thereby generating economic benefits.

Brand Strength

Brand strength is the efficacy of a brand’s performance on intangible measures relative to its competitors. Brand Finance evaluates brand strength in a process compliant with ISO 20671, looking at Marketing Investment, Stakeholder Equity, and the impact of those on Business Performance. The data used is derived from Brand Finance’s proprietary market research programme and from publicly available sources.

Each brand is assigned a Brand Strength Index (BSI) score out of 100, which feeds into the brand value calculation. Based on the score, each brand is assigned a corresponding Brand Rating up to AAA+ in a format similar to a credit rating.

Brand Valuation Approach

Brand Finance calculates the values of brands in its rankings using the Royalty Relief approach – a brand valuation method compliant with the industry standards set in ISO 10668. It involves estimating the likely future revenues that are attributable to a brand by calculating a royalty rate that would be charged for its use, to arrive at a ‘brand value’ understood as a net economic benefit that a brand owner would achieve by licensing the brand in the open market.

The steps in this process are as follows:

1 Calculate brand strength using a balanced scorecard of metrics assessing Marketing Investment, Stakeholder Equity, and Business Performance. Brand strength is expressed as a Brand Strength Index (BSI) score on a scale of 0 to 100.

2 Determine royalty range for each industry, reflecting the importance of brand to purchasing decisions. In luxury, the maximum percentage is high, while in extractive industry, where goods are often commoditised, it is lower. This is done by reviewing comparable licensing agreements sourced from Brand Finance’s extensive database.

3 Calculate royalty rate. The BSI score is applied to the royalty range to arrive at a royalty rate. For example, if the royalty range in a sector is 0-5% and a brand has a BSI score of 80 out of 100, then an appropriate royalty rate for the use of this brand in the given sector will be 4%.

4 Determine brand-specific revenues by estimating a proportion of parent company revenues attributable to a brand.

5 Determine forecast revenues using a function of historic revenues, equity analyst forecasts, and economic growth rates.

6 Apply the royalty rate to the forecast revenues to derive brand revenues.

7 Discount post-tax brand revenues to a net present value which equals the brand value.


Brand Finance has produced this study with an independent and unbiased analysis. The values derived and opinions presented in this study are based on publicly available information and certain assumptions that Brand Finance used where such data was deficient or unclear. Brand Finance accepts no responsibility and will not be liable in the event that the publicly available information relied upon is subsequently found to be inaccurate. The opinions and financial analysis expressed in the study are not to be construed as providing investment or business advice. Brand Finance does not intend the study to be relied upon for any reason and excludes all liability to any body, government, or organisation.

The data presented in this study form part of Brand Finance's proprietary database, are provided for the benefit of the media, and are not to be used in part or in full for any commercial or technical purpose without written permission from Brand Finance.

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