DUBAI: Oil and gas giant Aramco has once again been crowned the most valuable brand in Saudi Arabia and the Middle East, with a remarkable increase of 16 percent to $43.6 billion, according to a leading valuation consultancy.
In Brand Finance’s latest report Brand Finance Middle East 150, this means Aramco’s brand now accounts for almost as much value as the next five companies combined in the ranking.
It was also the only Arab company in the top 100 of the world’s 500 most valuable brands, according to the report.
Following a difficult period for the oil and gas sector at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, oil prices rebounded in 2021, buoyed by the natural gas crisis that saw businesses turn to crude products.
The increasing demand saw Aramco’s third-quarter profits more than triple year-on-year, helping push its market valuation to $2 trillion. In a move that is reflective of its growth and optimistic outlook, Aramco announced plans to increase its production capacity from 12 million barrels a day to 13 million by 2027.
The company has continued to invest heavily in the brand to support both core and other businesses through a global campaign as well as investments in sports such as Formula 1 and golf.
Abu Dhabi National Oil Company retained its position as the UAE’s most valuable brand and second most valuable brand in the Middle East region with its brand value increasing by 19 percent to $12.8 billion.
Ma’aden retained its position as the most valuable mining, metals and minerals brand in both Saudi Arabia and across the Middle East. With a 69 percent increase in value to $503 million, it is also the fastest-growing brand this year in the Middle East.
Etisalat emerged as the strongest brand in the Middle East, as well as the strongest telecoms brand globally in Brand Finance’s Telecoms 150 ranking for 2022.
Etisalat, which recently announced a new identity e&, saw its brand value increase by 18 percent this year to $10.1 billion, making it the world’s strongest telecoms brand and the strongest brand in the Middle East and Africa across all industry sectors.
“Across the Middle East, we see a strong rebound of ‘physical’ brands after the pandemic, and Saudi brands are taking advantage of this,” Andrew Campbell, managing director of Brand Finance Middle East, told Arab News.
He added: “SABIC is the most valuable chemicals brand, Almarai is the most valuable food brand, Ma’aden is the most valuable mining brand, Aramco is far and away the most valuable oil and gas brand, and stc is the most valuable telecoms brand. These brands are not just leading Saudi Arabia, they are leading the Middle East on their way to becoming major global players.”
Honing in on the Kingdom, Aramco accounted for nearly 50 percent of the total brand value in the Brand Finance Saudi Arabia 50 2022 ranking.
Telecoms company stc emerged as the strongest brand in the Kingdom according to a score that was determined based on various metrics such as marketing investment, stakeholder equity and business performance.
In addition to being Saudi’s strongest brand, stc also saw its brand value increase by 16 percent to $10.6 billion, consolidating its position as Saudi Arabia’s second most valuable brand for the third consecutive year.
The telecoms giant’s performance is primarily due to strong growth in the business and enterprise sector. It also plays a key role in Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030 through continuous investment and diversification.
Last year, stc announced it would be investing $400 million to build the largest cloud-enabled data center in the MENA region. Its subsidiary stc Pay was awarded one of the first digital banking licenses in Saudi Arabia.
“Each of the major Saudi brands are working towards Vision 2030 in their respective sectors, recording impressive growth,” said Campbell.
“These new rankings show that Saudi brands are growing and leading right across the Middle East,” he added.