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Oil, Gas, Petrochemical and Energy Field Specialized Channel
Oil, Gas, Petrochemical and Energy Field Specialized Channel

Saudis Mull Delaying Intl Aramco IPO Until 2019

Saudi Arabia has been making contingency plans for a possible delay of the IPO, expected to be the largest in history.

Saudi Arabia is considering selling shares in its state oil company in Riyadh next year while delaying the international portion of the initial public offering until at least 2019, according to people familiar with the situation.

A two-stage Saudi Aramco IPO is one of several options being considered, the people said, asking not to be identified because discussions are private. Another plan would include listing in Riyadh next year and privately selling a stake in Aramco to one or several cornerstone investors, one of the people said.

The IPO is the centerpiece of a broad-ranging economic reform program proposed by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, the dominant political force in the kingdom. Any delay would be a setback for his plans as well as the plethora of international investment banks and international exchanges eyeing millions in fees and commissions.

Saudi Arabia has been making contingency plans for a possible delay of the IPO, expected to be the largest in history, Bloomberg News reported last month. While the government has insisted the original timetable remains on track, several important decisions have yet to be taken, including a location for the international listing, stretching the ability of the company to sell shares overseas before the end of next year.

There is a precedent for bringing in cornerstone investors before a groundbreaking commodities IPO. Glencore PLC sold in 2009 a stake through a convertible bond ahead of its 2011 IPO, still the largest ever in London where the company raised nearly $10 billion.

Despite the work on alternative plans, Saudi Arabia said earlier this month that schedule for the blockbuster initial public offering wasn’t “slipping” and the country still planned a sale by the end of 2018.

The government is “moving right ahead” for an IPO of Saudi Aramco in the second half of next year, Oil Minister Khalid Al-Falih said in Moscow. “There is nothing to indicate that schedule is slipping in any way.”

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Parvin Faghfouri Azar
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Saudis Mull Delaying Intl Aramco IPO Until 2019

Saudi Arabia has been making contingency plans for a possible delay of the IPO, expected to be the largest in history.
Parvin Faghfouri Azar
Saudi Arabia is considering selling shares in its state oil company in Riyadh next year while delaying the international portion of the initial public offering until at least 2019, according to people familiar with the situation.A two-stage Saudi Aramco IPO is one of several options being considered, the people said, asking not to be identified because discussions are private. Another plan would include listing in Riyadh next year and privately selling a stake in Aramco to one or several cornerstone investors, one of the people said.The IPO is the centerpiece of a broad-ranging economic reform program proposed by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, the dominant political force in the kingdom. Any delay would be a setback for his plans as well as the plethora of international investment banks and international exchanges eyeing millions in fees and commissions.Saudi Arabia has been making contingency plans for a possible delay of the IPO, expected to be the largest in history, Bloomberg News reported last month. While the government has insisted the original timetable remains on track, several important decisions have yet to be taken, including a location for the international listing, stretching the ability of the company to sell shares overseas before the end of next year.There is a precedent for bringing in cornerstone investors before a groundbreaking commodities IPO. Glencore PLC sold in 2009 a stake through a convertible bond ahead of its 2011 IPO, still the largest ever in London where the company raised nearly $10 billion.Despite the work on alternative plans, Saudi Arabia said earlier this month that schedule for the blockbuster initial public offering wasn’t “slipping” and the country still planned a sale by the end of 2018.The government is “moving right ahead” for an IPO of Saudi Aramco in the second half of next year, Oil Minister Khalid Al-Falih said in Moscow. “There is nothing to indicate that schedule is slipping in any way.”
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