Aramco seeking advice on assets, timing of IPO

Saudi Aramco reportedly sent the request for proposals to international strategy firms about three weeks ago to study scenarios for an initial public offering

Aramco currently pumps all of Saudi Arabia’s crude oil.
Aramco currently pumps all of Saudi Arabia’s crude oil.

Saudi Aramco has reportedly asked consultants to bid for a role advising it on which assets to privatise and how to execute a potential share sale, as the kingdom presses ahead with plans for an initial public offering, according to Bloomberg.

People with knowledge of the matter told Bloomberg that Aramco sent the request for proposals to international strategy firms about three weeks ago to study scenarios for an initial public offering, including how long the process might take and which assets or joint ventures to include.

Results of the study will be submitted to the Saudi government during the first half of the year, according to the sources.

Options being considered include selling shares in the parent company, placing Aramco’s domestic and overseas downstream joint ventures into a holding company and selling shares in that, or grouping together the companies’ joint ventures and smaller refineries, one of the people said.

Request for proposals haven’t been sent to banks yet, the people said.

Aramco currently pumps all of Saudi Arabia’s crude oil, with production at 10.2mn barrels a day in February.

With relatively opaque operations, the company could fetch a value of anywhere from $1tn to $10tn, potentially making it the most valuable company in the world.

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