The UAE Central Bank is the primary financial regulatory authority in the country. There are 23 local and 26 foreign banks in UAE. Larger banks dominate the country’s banking industry, with the five biggest banks accounting for about 60% of the sector’s assets. Islamic banking comprises 8 full-fledged Islamic banks and 23 Islamic windows set up by conventional banks in UAE, collectively accounting for 19% of total sector assets.
There are 4 types of banks in UAE:
For anyone considering a career in banking in UAE, this list is a helpful guide on where to start. To learn more, see our lists of financial institutions.
Emirates NBD is the largest banking group in the Middle East. It is headquartered in Dubai and employs 9,000 staff. The bank currently manages 221 branches and 1,023 ATMs and SDMs in UAE and overseas. It operates through different business segments: Retail Banking and Wealth Management, Wholesale Banking, Islamic Banking (IB), International, and Information Technology and Operations.
In 2016, the bank’s total assets amounted to US$121 billion and net profit reached US$1.97 billion.
Established in 1968, it is the largest lender bank in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi. It provides corporate, retail, private, investment and Islamic banking services. The bank is headquartered in Abu Dhabi and is present in 19 countries across the world.
The National Bank of Abu Dhabi employs 10,849 staff. In 2016, the bank reported total assets of US$114 billion and posted a net profit of US$1.44 billion.
Founded in 1985, Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank provides retail, commercial, and Islamic banking, and other financial services. The bank operates through the following business segments: Consumer Banking, Wholesale Banking, Investments and Treasury Banking, and Property Management. It employs 16,924 staff and is headquartered in Abu Dhabi.
As of 2016, the total assets of the bank were US$70 billion and net profit was US$1.13 billion.
First Gulf Bank was established in 1979 and is headquartered in Abu Dhabi. The bank‘s business segments include Wholesale Banking Group, Treasury and Global Markets, Consumer Banking, Real Estate, and Other Operations. It employs around 1,436 individuals and is present in 19 countries, including Kuwait, China, the UK, France, Malaysia, Bahrain, Sudan, Hong Kong, Switzerland Lebanon, Labuan, Oman, Egypt, USA, Jordan, Brazil, and India.
In 2016, the bank’s total assets amounted to US$66 billion and net profit reached US$1.65 billion.
Dubai Islamic Bank came into existence in 1975 and is headquartered in Dubai. The bank operates through its Consumer Banking, Corporate Banking, Real Estate Development, Treasury, and Other business segments. It serves around 1.7 million customers and maintains 90 branches across UAE.
In 2016, the bank reported total assets of US$47 billion and posted a net profit of US$1.12 billion.
Mashreq Bank was founded in 1967 and is headquartered in Dubai. The bank is a Joint Stock Company and is an associated company of the HSBC Group. It provides retail banking, commercial banking, investment banking, Islamic banking, brokerage and asset management services. The bank operates around 45 domestic branches and 20 international branches and is present in Egypt, Qatar, Kuwait, and Bahrain. It currently employs around 4,000 staff.
As of 2016, the bank’s total assets were US$33 billion and net profit was US$531 million.
The bank was established in 1997 and is headquartered in Abu Dhabi. It operates through the following segments: Global Retail Banking, Global Wholesale Banking, Private Banking, Treasury, Real Estate, and Others. It is present in Egypt, Iraq, Saudi Arabia and the UK.
In 2016, total assets of the bank amounted to US$33 billion and net profit reached US$531 million.
Founded in 1982, Union National Bank provides commercial and investment banking services to salaried individuals, self-employed individuals, high net worth individuals, and business entities in the UAE and other countries. Headquartered in Abu Dhabi, the bank manages a network of 76 branches around the world. It operates through its International and Financial Institutions division and Treasury and Investments division.
In 2016, the bank reported total assets of US$28 billion and posted a net profit of US$430 million.
The Commercial Bank of Dubai was founded in 1969 and is headquartered in Dubai. The bank offers corporate banking, commercial banking, personal banking, Islamic banking and support services. It is the 35th largest bank in the Persian Gulf region.
As of 2016, the bank’s total assets were US$17 billion and net profit was US$273 million.
Established in 1976, RAKBank is headquartered in Ras Al-Khaimah, UAE. It is also known as the National Bank of Ras Al Khaimah (P.J.S.C). The bank provides retail and commercial banking services to individuals and businesses in UAE. The business operates through five segments: Retail Banking, Wholesale Banking, Business Banking, Treasury, and Insurance Business. It manages a network of 38 branches and serves around 700,000 customers.
In 2016, the total assets of the bank amounted to US$11 billion and net profit reached US$180 million.
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This has been a guide to the top banks in the UAE. For anyone looking for a career in banking, this list is a great place to start your networking. Please also see these additional resources: