According to Brand Finance’s Global 500 report 2021, ADNOC is the most valuable brand in UAE and has maintained the position for the third consecutive years despite the global oil industry enduring the worst phase due to the pandemic, though ADNOC has slipped three points to 163rd in the ranking. ADNOC was, in fact, the first UAE brand to surpass USD 10 billion marks in brand value last year. 2020 has been a very challenging year due to the global pandemic situation.
Brand Value is basically the worth or overall financial gauge of the brand and company. It can be measured through a marketing investment, stakeholder equity, and business performance, evaluating relative strengths of brands based on the factors such as customer satisfaction, reputation, staff satisfaction, and investment and marketing.
Brand Finance is an independent branded business valuation consultancy according to which the most valuable brands of UAE in 2021 are Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC), Etisalat and Emirates and are amongst the world’s top brands. The overall picture of the top ten companies in global brand value as per the Brand Finance report is — Apple jumped to first positions followed by Amazon, Google, Microsoft, Samsung, Walmart, Facebook, ICBC, Verizon and WeChat.
However, ADNOC has successfully sheltered its brand value with only a brand loss of 6% amounting to USD 10.8 billion (equivalent to AED 39.7 billion) from USD 11.4 billion, making it the most resilient of all National Oil Companies globally.
Dr. Sultan bin Ahmed Al Jaber, who is also the Minister of Industry and Advanced Technology, said to the Brand Finance team that ADNOC’s resilience, despite the COVID-19 pandemic, was a testament to the vision of wise leadership throughout the unification and transformation. It has helped secure the Group’s position as a responsible and sustainable driver of economic growth in the UAE and for many generations to come. Dr Sultan Bin Ahmed Al Jaber was ranked as 13rd in the top 100 CEOs in the Brand Guardianship Index 2021, the highest-ranking achieved for UAE.
The transformative strategy of 2016 has worked wonders for the company by almost increasing the brand value to 3 times more making it the second most valuable brand in the Middle East after Saudi Aramco whose brand value amounts to USD 37.5 billion and amongst the ten most valuable brands in the Oil & Gas Sector. Since the start of its transformation, it has raised USD 64 billion from the world’s leading investors.
According to Brand Finance’s, Etisalat, which is the largest telecommunication corporation in Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) and the fastest mobile network in the world as recognized by Ookla Speedtest in 2020, has been rated Middle East’s strongest brand with a Brand Strength Index (BSI) score of 87.4 out of 100 and with AAA brand strength rating. This has to help Etisalat to rank itself among the top 25 brands globally for BSI.
Etisalat was able to respond swiftly and with agility to the new normal of the pandemic and provided flexibility and solutions to the customer’s problems regarding their services and connect with them. With the pandemic going on, telecom networks became a lifeline and Etisalat foresee the future, backed by years of network and infrastructural investment and therefore handled the overwhelming situation of the pandemic connecting millions of individuals as well as businesses.
Etisalat supported the UAE government by initiating stay at home campaigns to help control the spread of the coronavirus and developed initiatives to let over 1 million students in the country benefit from free access to distance learning websites and platforms. With assistance from the Ministry of Education and Telecommunications Regulatory Authority, free mobile data was made available to over twelve thousand students who were not privileged to have the internet at home in order for them to enable distanced learning.
Ultimately Etisalat has advanced from 225th to 208th in the brand value ranking this year, by staying true to its vision of driving the digital future to empower societies. Hatem Dowidar, CEO of Etisalat, was ranked 83rd in the top 100 CEOs in the Brand Guardianship Index 2021.
Emirates has descended from 300th to 421st in the brand value ranking this year. It was placed fourth after ranking first as per brand finance for the past five years amongst the airlines in 2020 with a worth of USD 6.3 billion with an AAA rating. This value has decreased in 2021 due to the global pandemic, since it is in the business of travel, due to the restrictions and lockdown the airports and airlines were completely shut down for months, the aviation sector being the most affected.
A large number of airlines have grounded most of the fleets as they have confronted the crises, unlike anything. This has caused not only Emirates but to the industry of airlines a huge loss. Despite this, Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, CEO of Emirates, has been ranked fifteenth in the Top 100 CEO.
A clear impact of the COVID-19 pandemic can be seen in the aerospace and airline brands account as six out of the ten fastest-falling brands in this year’s Brand Finance Global 500 were the Airlines.
However, with the lifting of restrictions and the world moving towards normality, it is expected that the airline’s business will pick up and improve its performance in the days to come. Moreover, Emirates is expected to take a huge part in the coming Expo 2020 which was delayed due to the pandemic to be held from October 2021 to March 2022. This will help in the growth of Emirates as well as the economy of the country of UAE in general.
Other important and valuable brands followed by the three leaders in UAE are Emirates NBD, First Abu Dhabi Bank, Du, ADCB, Emaar properties, Dubai Islamic Bank and Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank with ADCB being the fastest growing brand with a growth of 41% to USD 2.7 billion and a brand rating of AA as per the report of Brand Finance UAE 25 2020. However, these brands did not make it to the Brand Finance Global 500.