Third of Saudi companies expect to grow by 10%

Saudi companies aremore optimistic about revenue growth than they were last year, according to new survey. (AN file photo)
Updated 10 September 2018
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Third of Saudi companies expect to grow by 10%

  • Saudi business leaders are also on a hiring spree, with 58 percent looking to recruit more full-time staff
  • Saudi business leaders also see the need to expand beyond the Kingdom if they are to become market leaders

RIYADH: A third of middle-market Saudi businesses expect to grow by at least 10 percent this year and more than half will hire extra full-time staff, a new survey suggests.

Saudi companies are significantly more optimistic about revenue growth than they were last year, according to the EY Growth Barometer, an annual survey of entrepreneurs’ and business leaders’ growth strategies produced by the global professional services company Ernst & Young.

“Company leaders ... in Saudi Arabia are riding a wave of ambition and confidence, as set out by Vision 2030 and the National Transformation Program,” said Fahad Altoaimi, EY’s Saudi Arabia managing partner.

“Contrary to the common belief that regulation stifles innovation, Saudi executives believe that reforms set out by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman have been driving change and growth.

“This is very encouraging for Saudi businesses — one of the key goals of Vision 2030 was to increase participation from middle-market businesses in the economy.”

Attitudes to new technology have also evolved rapidly. In 2017, 94 percent of Saudi respondents to the EY survey said they would never adopt robotic process automation. Now, 82 percent say they will have adopted AI by 2020 and implemented robotic process automation, with 95 percent of respondents planning to do so within five years.

According to the EY survey, Saudi business leaders also see the need to expand beyond the Kingdom if they are to become market leaders. Overseas expansion is the leading growth priority for 29 percent of respondents, while 18 percent of middle-market businesses are aiming to grow at home. 

Saudi business leaders are also on a hiring spree, with 58 percent looking to recruit more full-time staff. The greatest talent need, however, is more diversity, cited by 62 percent of Saudi Arabian respondents. 

 

 


Emaar is ‘most recommended’ brand in KSA, says YouGov survey

Updated 15 November 2018
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Emaar is ‘most recommended’ brand in KSA, says YouGov survey

  • The Dubai-based developer bumped Emirates airline from the top spot into second place
  • Korean car giant Kia had the most improved level of customer advocacy in the past 12 months

LONDON: Emaar has claimed top spot in a list of most recommended brands in Saudi Arabia, according to a YouGov survey.
The Dubai-based developer, more associated with its home emirate than the Kingdom, nevertheless raced up from fifth position last year and bumped airline Emirates from the top spot into second place.
The rankings reflect a mix of brands including travel, real estate, consumer goods and financial services, YouGov said.
“Brand advocacy is an indicator of a brand’s performance in terms of customer service and satisfaction,” said Scott Booth, the regional head of YouGov BrandIndex.
“A recommendation from friend or family is one of the most powerful votes of confidence and provides invaluable endorsement for a brand.”
Apple, iPhone and Almarai have seen a drop in the Advocacy Rankings, produced by YouGov’s daily brand tracking tool BrandIndex. It measures how much current and former customers endorsed brands over the past year by asking respondents, “Would you recommend the brand to a friend or colleague?” or “Would you tell a friend or colleague to avoid the brand?”
Korean car giant Kia had the most improved level of customer advocacy in the past 12 months.
Other brands such as Bison, Power Horse, Coca-Cola Zero, Red Bull and Pepsi Max also registered significant improvement in their brand advocacy scores this year.