Overview of Banks in Saudi Arabia
There are 24 licensed banks in Saudi Arabia, consisting of 12 local banks and 12 branches of foreign banks. The Saudi Arabian Monetary Authority (SAMA), the kingdom’s central bank, oversees the operations of commercial banks in Saudi Arabia.
The SAMA is also responsible for issuing the country’s national currency (Saudi rial), managing the country’s foreign exchange reserves, promoting price and exchange rate stability, and ensuring the growth and soundness of the domestic financial industry.
There are four types of banks in Saudi Arabia:
- Commercial banks
- Industrial banks
- Agricultural banks
- Real estate banks
According to Moody’s in early 2021, Saudi Arabia’s banking system is stable, it enjoys a good financial position and strong franchise and rated industry’s average D+ financial strength rating. Seen as strengths by Moody’s are the overall caliber of management in the Saudi banking sector and the quality of technical management agreements between the joint-venture banks and their foreign parents. Both factors are regarded as important rating issues.
For anyone considering a career in banking in Saudi Arabia, this list of top banks in Saudi Arabia is a helpful guide on where to start. To learn more, see our lists of financial institutions.
The Top Banks in Saudi Arabia are:
Saudi National Bank
Incorporated in 1953, Saudi National Commercial Bank, also known as AlAhli Bank, is the largest of the banks in Saudi Arabia and is considered a pioneer in Islamic banking. Headquartered in Riyadh, it employs 13,334 staff and serves more than 5 million customers through its 431 branches.
Net income: SAR 11.44 billion (2020)
Total assets: SAR 599.57 billion (3/2021)
Al Rajhi Banking Corporation
Founded in 1957, Al Rajhi Bank provides Islamic, personal, auto and home financial banking services, and corporate banking investment solutions in Saudi Arabia. Headquartered in Riyadh, the bank employs 13,700 staff in its 591 branches. It is also present in Malaysia, Kuwait, and Jordan.
Net income: SAR 10.60 billion (2020)
Total assets: SAR 512.23 billion (3/2021)
Samba was founded in 1955 and is into providing financial services in the kingdom. It manages 73 branches in Saudi Arabia, one branch each in London, Qatar, and Dubai, as well as 28 branches in Pakistan.
The bank is present in GCC, Europe, and South Asia, including Dubai, Qatar, and Pakistan. As of April 1, 2021, Samba Financial Group was acquired by the Saudi National Bank.
Net income: SAR 4.2 billion (2020)
Total assets: SAR 296.95 billion (2020)
Headquartered in Riyadh, Riyad Bank came into existence in 1957. It offers retail and corporate customers wide-ranging products and services that are fully compliant with Islamic Sharia law. The bank is considered the leading financier and arranger of syndicated loans for oil, petrochemicals, and infrastructure projects among the banks in Saudi Arabia.
Net income: SAR 4.72 billion (2020)
Total assets: SAR 308.04 billion (3/2021)
Banque Saudi Fransi
Established in 1977, Banque Saudi Fransi offers local and international banking services to its clients. The bank employs 2,883 staff in its 87 branches. It is headquartered in Riyadh and manages three regional offices in Jeddah, Al-Riyadh, and Al-Khob.
Net income: SAR 1.55 billion (2020)
Total assets: SAR 202.23 billion (3/2021)
Saudi British Bank
Saudi British Bank was formed in 1978 and is headquartered in Riyadh. It is a joint stock company and is an associated company of the HSBC Group.
The bank offers investment banking, commercial banking, private banking, and Islamic banking services. It operates 113 branches in the Kingdom and counts around 4,156 employees.
Net income: SAR -4.13 billion (2020)
Total assets: SAR 271.56 billion (3/2021)
Arab National Bank
Founded in 1979, Arab National offers comprehensive commercial and investment banking services, in addition to specialized services in the fields of heavy equipment leasing and home finance. It operates through the following segments: Retail Banking, Corporate Banking, Treasury Banking, Investment and Brokerage Services, and Others.
Headquartered in Riyadh, the bank oversees regional offices in Jeddah and Khobar, and a branch in London. It serves around two million customers through its 136 branches. and employs around 4,000 individuals.
Net income: SAR 2.07 billion (2020)
Total assets: SAR 177.43 billion (3/2021)
Alawwal Bank was established in 1926, making it one of the oldest banks in Saudi Arabia. The bank provides banking and investment services in the kingdom. It operates through its Corporate Banking, Personal Banking, Investment Banking and Investment Services, and Central Treasury and ALCO segments.
Headquartered in Riyadh, it employs around 2,600 individuals and operates through a network of 65 branches. In 2016, it was renamed from Saudi Hollandi Bank to Alawwal Bank. On March 14, 2021, Alawwal Bank and Saudi British Bank fully integrated in a historic merger.
Alinma Bank was founded in 2006. The bank provides banking and investment services through its 175 branches and 1,551 ATMs. It operates through various segments: Retail Banking, Corporate Banking, Treasury, and Investment and Brokerage.
Net income: SAR 1.97 billion (2020)
Total assets: SAR 159.95 billion (3/2021)
Saudi Investment Bank
Saudi Investment Bank (SAIB) was founded in 1976 and is headquartered in Riyadh. The bank provides investment and banking services. It also offers wholesale, retail, and commercial banking products. It specifically arranges financing for quasi-government and private industrial sectors, and trade finance products for importers and exporters.
SAIB employs around 1,400 staff across the world. Shareholders in the publicly-listed bank include J. P. Morgan Chase, Mizuho Corporate Bank, Saudi public and private institutions, as well as Saudi citizens.
Net income: SAR 979 million (2020)
Total assets: SAR 96.27 billion (3/2021)
Careers in Investment Banking
To break into investment banking, there are several important things to focus on. These include networking, resume, experience, and financial modeling skills. To learn more, explore our interactive career map:
For banking careers, you will have a significant edge over the competition with our financial modeling courses.
This has been CFI’s guide to the top banks in Saudi Arabia. or anyone looking for a career in banking, this list is a great place to start your networking. Please also see these additional resources: