Saudi Aramco sets stage for world record IPO
Saudi Aramco is gearing up for a blockbuster share sale.
Next week may see the world’s largest oil firm announce plans to float a stake of up to 2 percent.
If that doesn’t sound much, it could still raise 25 billion dollars or more – making it the largest ever IPO. That’s an indication of just how big Aramco is. It’s hoping the deal will value it at two trillion dollars.
The shares are expected to be listed on the kingdom’s Tadawul market.
An international listing may come later.
Sources say the government in Riyadh has met with wealthy Saudis to secure their participation. Local banks are reportedly offering cheap loans to help smaller investors buy in. The government wants as many citizens as possible to buy shares in the national champion.
To some onlookers the sale might seem oddly timed though. Aramco is still recovering from last month’s attacks on several facilities.
They halved its output of crude oil, and drove a spike in oil prices. Yemen’s Houthi militants claimed responsibility, though the U.S. blamed Iran. But Aramco says it’s on track to restore production. It hopes to be back at full capacity by the end of November.
By then, investors may know whether they’ll get to own a small slice of the global giant.