Michigan companies doing business in Saudi Arabia and Qatar


With a nominal 2015 GDP of $646 billion, Saudi Arabia is the world’s 15th-largest economy. The country’s economy is mostly based on oil, and Saudi Arabia possesses roughly 16 percent of the world’s proven petroleum reserves, according to the CIA World Factbook.

Saudi Arabia’s largest exports are petroleum and petroleum products. Its biggest export partners are China (13.2 percent), Japan (10.9 percent), the U.S. (9.6 percent) and India (9.6 percent).

Its largest imports are chemicals, foodstuffs, machinery, motor vehicles and textiles.

qatar airways

Qatar is the world’s 52nd-largest economy, with a nominal 2015 GDP of $166.9 billion.

Qatar’s largest exports are liquefied natural gas, steel, fertilizers and petroleum products. Its biggest export partners are Japan (25.4 percent), India (14.6 percent), China (8.4 percent) and the United Arab Emirates (6.8 percent).

Qatar’s largest imports are chemicals, machinery and transportation equipment and food.

Domino’s Pizza Inc.
Based: Ann Arbor
Operations: Master franchisee Alamar Foods operates 188 stores in Saudi Arabia and nine stores in Qatar.
Employees: 2,100
Products/Services: Pizza and side items such as chicken, potato wedges and chocolate lava cakes
Top executive: Peter Jones, managing director

Dow Chemical Co.
Based: Midland

Operations: Offices in Riyadh, Khobar, Jubail and Thuwal, Saudi Arabia; facilities in Dammam, Jeddah and Jubail, Saudi Arabia; R&D facility in Thuwal; a manufacturing facility in Jubail; and several joint ventures
Employees: 320 direct Dow employees and 500 Dow employees working on the Sadara joint venture
Products/Services: Performance plastics and specialty chemicals for the transportation, infrastructure, packaging and consumer products
Top executive: Charles Swartz, president for Dow Saudi Arabia
More information: On June 16, Dow became the first company to receive a trading license from Saudi Arabia

Energy International
Based: Canton Township
Operations: Offices in Riyadh, Jeddah and Dammam, Saudi Arabia; one operation in Doha, Qatar
Employees: 10
Products/Services: Sales for EI’s global operations and for industrial air movement equipment (fans, VAVs, etc.), fire and smoke curtains, air curtains, pumps and building management systems
Top executives: Ammar Assi, general manager in Qatar; Mazen Sheet, GM in Riyadh; Ahmed Athamneh, GM in Jeddah

Ford Motor Co.
Based: Dearborn
Operations: A regional office in Riyadh and one importer-dealer in greater Saudi Arabia; one importer-dealer in Qatar

Employees: 12 in Saudi Arabia and about 200 based in Dubai
Products/Services: Ford products and brands
Top executives: Thierry Sabbagh, managing director for Ford Middle East; Jacques Brent, president for Middle East and Africa

Ghafari Associates LLC
Based: Dearborn
Operations: Offices in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia; Doha, Qatar
Employees: 32
Products/Services: Engineering, architecture, process design, consulting and construction services for the automotive, aviation, commercial and corporate, health care, industrial, education, manufacturing and government industries
Top executive: Ali Solaksubasi, COO, travels between Chicago and the Middle East.

Ziebart International
Based: Troy
Operations: Master franchisee and three branches in Dammam, three branches in Riyadh, three branches in Jeddah and one branch in Hassa, Saudi Arabia; master franchisee, two retail locations and two processing locations in Doha, Qatar
Employees: 114
Products/Services: Appearance and protection services including detailing, paint protection, underbody sound barrier, sprayed-on bed liners, automotive glass repair, architectural film, window tint, paint protection film, truck accessories, electronics, vehicle wraps and graphics
Top executive: Thomas Wolfe, president and CEO