Gulf Countries

Forbes Middle East Reveals The Top 100 Arab Family Businesses 2024  

Forbes Middle East has unveiled its annual list of the Top 100 Arab Family Businesses for 2024, highlighting the long-standing conglomerates transforming through expansion and investment in the region.

To construct this list, Forbes Middle East only considered businesses owned or run by Arab families.

The conglomerates were ranked on their size, value, performance, business activity, age, legacy, and extent of the business’ geographic and sector diversification.

GCC families are the most successful in the family business space, with 34 of the 100 firms originating from Saudi Arabia, 28 from the UAE, and seven businesses each from Kuwait and Qatar.

Combined, these four Gulf countries constitute 76% of the list.

The Saudi Arabia-headquartered Abdul Latif Jameel reigns in the first place, with the UAE’s Al-Futtaim Group and Egypt’s Mansour Group rounding up the top three.

Of the top 10, the billionaire-owned Mansour Group is the only non-GCC-based entry. In May 2023, U.S.

Major League Soccer awarded a $500 million franchise to a group led by Mohamed Mansour to launch a football club in San Diego, California, by 2025.

Group Chairman Mohamed Mansour, alongside brothers Youssef and Yasseen, had a combined net worth of $5.8 billion as of February 2024, making them the richest Arab family featured on this year’s list.

From traditional real estate to hospitality investments, the family businesses on this list have stood the test of time, with six being established in the 1800s and 26 established before 1950.

Just six were established in the 2000s, all of which were formed due to a split or sale of an earlier business or consolidation of pre-existing assets to form a holding group.

For instance, Morocco’s O Capital Group was founded in 2021 when Holding Benjelloun Mezian merged with FinanceCom in the same year.

In contrast, Oman-based Towell Group is the oldest family business in the ranking, with roots dating back to 1866.

Backing sustainable operations with substantial capital has been a consistent priority for several of the 2024 listees. For example, AlNowais Investments Group has over 1,230MW of clean energy projects in Africa, Burkina Faso, Egypt, Jordan, Morocco, and Togo, either in operation or under construction.

Meanwhile, Alfardan Group signed an MoU with Electronics Recycling Factory to develop environmental sustainability and encourage e-waste recycling in June 2023.

Similarly, the Safari Group and the Knauf Group agreed in December 2023 to invest in and build a new state-of-the-art plasterboard production facility that will significantly reduce energy and water consumption.

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