• Etisalat becomes the first brand from the MEA region to achieve this global recognition by Brand Finance among 500 global brands
• With a telecom portfolio brand value of over USD 12.5 billion, Etisalat has also retained its position as both MEA’s most valuable telecom portfolio as well as strongest brand across all categories
• Ranking further enhances the UAE’s leading position in cutting-edge telecoms and digital transformation globally
• Group CEO Eng. Hatem Dowidar is ranked in the Elite List of Brand Guardians globally
Abu Dhabi, 26 January 2022: Etisalat has been ranked as the world’s strongest telecom brand and is the first in the Middle East and Africa (MEA) region to achieve this milestone recognition by Brand Finance, the world’s leading brand valuation authority.
With a telecom portfolio of well over US$ 12.5 billion, Etisalat not only retained its AAA brand rating but also its position in MEA as the strongest brand across all categories and the most valuable brand portfolio . These accolades underline the UAE’s leadership position globally in its cutting-edge telecom infrastructure and strategic advances in digital transformation.
Committed to customer value creation
Eng. Hatem Dowidar, CEO, Etisalat Group, said: “To be recognised as the world’s strongest telecom brand and as the most valuable telecom brand portfolio in MEA underline the success of our strategic initiatives to build a robust telecom infrastructure that creates added value for our customers wherever we serve. With our relentless focus on being customer-centric, we continue to push our horizons by investing in next generation technology that enhance our service offering and help shape the digital future.”
He added: “In this digital-first era, our focus is to be agile to meet the evolving requirements of our customers and deliver relevant and flexible services. Since our inception in 1976, we have been led by a vision to create a world-class telecom infrastructure that is central to economic progress. We are inspired by the support and guidance of the UAE leadership to stay innovative and future-focused so that we can continue to empower communities and enrich lives.”
Astute brand leadership
Brand Finance also named Eng. Hatem Dowidar to the Elite List of Brand Guardians globally. This recognises the ground-breaking initiatives that he launched since he joined Etisalat in September 2015, which played a key role in propelling Etisalat’s business growth. Assuming the role of Group CEO in 2020, he stewarded the company’s growth through the fast-changing telecom and technology landscape following the COVID-19 pandemic. His astute brand stewardship served as the foundation for enhancing Etisalat’s brand reputation as well as employee engagement.
David Haigh, Chairman and CEO, Brand Finance, said: “Guided by the vision to ‘drive the digital future to empower societies’, Etisalat is the world’s strongest telecoms brand of 2022, as well as retaining its status as the strongest brand in the Middle East and Africa for the second consecutive year. Etisalat’s brand focuses on togetherness and plays its part by providing a first-class telecoms infrastructure across its footprint. Exceptional rollout of 5G technology has also meant that the Etisalat Group’s portfolio of brands is the most valuable amongst telecoms organisations in the Middle East.”
Attributing the success to his team at Etisalat, Dowidar added: “Our significant brand value growth is the result of the contributions and dedication of our employees across all the markets where we operate. Alongside our partners, they are the cornerstones of our efforts to be a digital-first company that is future-ready, while upholding our vision to empower societies, and turn challenges into opportunities.”
With the UAE leading the world in fibre-to-the-home (FTTH) penetration rate, Etisalat’s robust fibre-optic infrastructure enhances the customer experiences across all business operations. Etisalat raised the benchmark as the world’s fastest network by delivering the best 5G experience at Expo 2020 Dubai as its official telecommunication and digital services partner, surpassing the expectations of millions of visitors. Etisalat has built a dedicated network for Expo 2020, which is the first 5G commercial site in MENA with more than 8,000 Wi-Fi access points, 8,500 mobile access points, and 700 km of fibre-optic cable.
As the UAE celebrates its 50th anniversary, Etisalat has leveraged its 46 years of telecoms experience and its investment in telecom infrastructure to enable the progress of the people and business alike, in addition to supporting vital sectors such as healthcare and education, especially following the pandemic. Through its ‘Stay at Home’ campaign, over one million students across the UAE completed their studies online seamlessly.
Empowering the digital future
As the telecom sector continues to evolve at breakneck speed, Dowidar is focused on strengthening Etisalat’s strategic role in empowering the communities it serves in global markets. “Our proven ability to deliver seamless connectivity is our differentiating strength. We are fully equipped to unlock the potential of digital technologies to drive digital transformation at all levels – from government to business to individuals. Our recognition as the world’s leading telecom brand further fuels our ambition to expand to new geographies and build innovative partnerships, underpinning Etisalat as a brand that makes a positive difference.”
Etisalat’s digital arm has already made great strides in its digital B2B services, particularly in cybersecurity, the Internet of Things (IoT), and cloud connectivity. Help Ag, Etisalat Enterprise Digital’s cybersecurity arm, protects customers against identity theft and serve as an effective digital transformation vehicle.
Brand Finance is the world’s leading independent branded business valuation and strategy authority. Founded in 1996 and headquartered in the City of London, it aims to ‘bridge the gap between marketing and finance.’ Brand Finance evaluates over 5,000 brands across all sectors and geographies every year. The 500 most valuable brands are included in the Brand Finance Global 500 report.