Saudi Aramco is moving forward with plans for an IPO following devastating attacks on one of its facilities, and new details suggest shares will be available before the year’s end.
The state-owned oil company could sell 1% to 2% of its shares on Saudi Arabia’s domestic exchange as soon as November, the Wall Street Journal reported Tuesday.
Aramco is poised to release its prospectus October 25 in Arabic, and follow up with an English version two days later, sources told WSJ. The document will be used to market Aramco shares to investors around the world.
Saudi officials considered delaying the public offering after drone strikes crippled the company’s infrastructure and prompted a spike in global oil prices. The possibility of additional attacks threatened to drive investors away from a future stock sale.
The company’s oil production will return to “maximum sustained capacity” by the end of November, Aramco CEO Amin Nasser told CNBC Wednesday. He added that the attack had “no impact” on the company’s plan to go public.
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Crown prince Mohammed bin Salman has previously called for the firm to be valued at $2 trillion, while other Saudi officials and company executives have pegged Aramco’s valuation closer to $1.5 trillion.
The crown prince plans to list 5% of the company in two stages, first offering between 1% and 2% of shares through domestic markets and later listing the rest of the 5% internationally.
Should Aramco list 5% of its shares at a $2 trillion valuation, the IPO could raise as much as $100 billion, four times the largest IPO to date. The company has hired JPMorgan, Morgan Stanley, and Saudi Arabia’s National Commercial Bank to assist in the offering, according to Reuters.
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