In 2016, Dubai International retained its status as the world’s busiest airport for international passengers. This year, the mega facility expects to receive 89 million passengers. Image Credit: GN Archives

 Dubai: Emirates continues to be the most valuable airline brand, pipping the likes of Qatar Airways, British Airways and US carrier United, according to the latest consultancy Brand Finance report released this week.

Emirates, with a value of $7.5 billion, ranked 171st on the report that ranks the top 500 global brands. The airline has been ranked the most valuable airline brand five years in a row since it took the spot from Germany’s Lufthansa in 2012.

This year’s list features the largest number of airlines — nine — since 2009 when 12 airlines were featured with Emirates also topping the ranking among airlines that year. Qatar Airways, Air China and China Eastern Airlines feature on this list this year having not been on it last year while this year also sees Lufthansa fall off.

“We invest strategically in building our brand and it is reflected in everything we do … We work hard to identify, anticipate, and meet the ever-changing needs of our diverse global audiences, as we firmly believe that this will position us to outperform in our industry now and in the future,” Boutros Boutros, Emirates’ Divisional Senior Vice President Corporate Communications, Marketing & Brand, said in a statement on Monday.

US carrier Delta was the second most valuable airline ranked 218th, followed by American Airlines at 227th, British Airways at 316th, United at 327th, Air China 364th, Southwest 426th, Qatar Airways 450th and China Eastern Airlines 464th.

Emirates also came out as the most valuable brand in the Middle East, ahead of Saudi Arabia’s STC ranked 258th, Etisalat 322nd and Qatar Airways.

Emirates has invested heavily sponsoring football clubs across Europe including Spain’s Real Madrid, England’s Arsenal and France’s Paris Saint Germaine. It also the current sponsor of British football tournament the FA Cup for three years at a reported cost of £30 million (Dh169 million) and last year recruited Hollywood actress Jennifer Aniston to become of the face of the airline in new ad campaign for a reported fee of $5 million.

The top ten brands globally were Apple, Google, Samsung,, Microsoft, American telecoms Verizon and AT&T, Walmart, China Mobile and Wells Fargo.

Emirates NBD most valuable bank in the UAE

Emirates NBD has been named the most valuable bank in the United Arab Emirates on a global bank branding list released by consultancy Brand Finance this week.

The bank ranked 96th on the 2016 list, the highest placement by a UAE firm that features 500 global banks. Emirates NBD’s brand was valued at $2.186 billion.

The other UAE banks on the list were National Bank of Abu Dhabi 119th, FGB 129th, ADCB 138th, Dubai Islamic Bank 189th, Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank 206th, Mashreq 242nd, RAK Bank 250th, Union National Bank 270th, Commercial Bank of Dubau 361st and UAB 496th.

America’s Wells Fargo was the top ranked bank brand globally.