Saudi Arabian Oil & 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.
Every year, leading brand valuation consultancy Brand Finance puts thousands of the world’s biggest brands to the test, and publishes over 100 reports, ranking brands across all sectors and countries. Saudi Arabia’s top 50 most valuable and strongest brands are included in the annual Brand Finance Saudi Arabia 50 2023 ranking.
Saudi Arabia’s national oil company has benefited from a surge in prices and demand for Oil & Gas this year. Aramco has looked to expand its global presence and reach, launching Aramco Trading Americas in 2022. A collaboration with Chinese Shandong Energy Group is also in the pipeline, exploring potential integrated refining and petrochemical opportunities in China. ESG considerations have also been emphasised by the brand as it looks to become a key player in Saudi Arabia’s energy transition.
Andrew Campbell Managing Director, Middle East, Brand Finance commented:
“Sustainability has been at the forefront of Aramco’s communications with stakeholders this year as the brand looks to substantiate its claim that it can provide the ‘lowest carbon’ oil in the industry and become a key player in the regions energy transition.”
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.
stc is the strongest brand in Saudi Arabia with a Brand Strength Index (BSI) score of 87 out of 100 and a corresponding AAA rating. With a brand value of US$12.3 billion it is also the most valuable telecoms brand in the Middle East. The brand’s value was positively affected by stc’s technological investments to keep delivering on its ambitious strategy and increased focus on the expansion of the brand in adjacent sectors such as ICT and IT.
Mobily, the fastest growing telecoms brand in the Middle East, (brand value up 18% to US$1.8 billion) maintained its status as the 2nd most valuable Saudi Arabian telecoms brand. Mobily provides integrated telecommunications services, leveraging its modern wireless network, which is among the largest by coverage in Saudi Arabia and the Middle East
Cooking oil brand Afia (brand value up 11% to US$260 million) is Saudi Arabia’s fastest growing brand. The brand has a leading position in its market throughout the Middle East and North Africa and has complemented its premium positioning with an emphasis on its proposition as an important part of a heart-healthy diet. The focus on health in its communication campaigns and as a central pillar of its brand has been well received amongst consumers in the region and has benefited Afia’s brand considerably. The brand has seen revenues grow in its key markets and segments. It has contributed to its impressive growth and 5-point Brand Strength Index Score increase to 73/100, and corresponding AA rating.
Al-Rajhi Bank (brand value up 32% to US$5.7 billion) is the most valuable Saudi Arabian banking brand. It is also the strongest bank in the Middle Eastern region with a Brand Strength Index (BSI) score of 85.5 out of 100 and corresponding AAA rating. Al-Rajhi Bank saw record net profits in 2022, attributing its success to digitalisation and its growth strategies based on customer loyalty, investor confidence and the professionalism of its employees.
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. This new customer-centric identity signals opportunities for further brand strength growth, which is currently 74 out of 100 with a corresponding AA rating.
Chemicals Company SABIC (brand value up 1% to US$4.7 billion) saw marginal growth and remains the most valuable chemicals brand in the Middle East. The brand continues to pursue its ambition of becoming the world’s leading chemicals brand and adapt to volatile changes of raw material prices and manufacturing trends that it is operating in. It has also confirmed a long-term sponsorship partnership with Formula E in which it becomes innovation partner, potential boosting the brand’s awareness.
Saudia’s brand value increased 14% year-on-year to US$650 million, further securing itself as a leading Middle Eastern airline brand. It is the second fastest growing airline brand in the region as it continues to play a vital role to support the kingdoms ambitious travel and tourism targets. As the flag carrier for the Kingdom, it also has a role to play in contributing to building Saudi Soft Power and Nation Brand Value.
KFSH&RC entered the ranking for the first time with a brand value of US$1.1 billion. The Riyadh based Academic Medical Centre provides specialized healthcare in an integrated educational and research setting. Its patient-centric offering and world-class facilities have allowed the hospital to build a strong brand perception amongst patients within the Middle East as one of the premier choices for healthcare. This was clearly demonstrated in Brand Finance’s Global Top 250 Hospitals 2023 report in which KFSH&RC was the highest ranked Academic Medical Centre (AMC) in the Middle East and North Africa region, and 20th in the global ranking.