In January 2016, the official confirmation of the project of ipo of the largest oil company in the world had upset the sector. Almost two years later, nothing is more certain, then, that a decision of the deputy crown prince Mohammed bin Salman was expected in June. Saudi Aramco is planning to abandon this idea in favour of a private placement with sovereign wealth funds and international institutional investors, reported Friday, October 13, the Financial Times, citing sources close to the matter.
According to the british daily, discussing a private placement with sovereign wealth funds, including chinese, and other investors are in fact accelerated in recent weeks. The idea of a listing on a foreign stock Exchange, however, has created more doubts: the saudi royal family himself inquièterait of legal risks in the event of a listing in New York or London, especially because of the american legislation, anti-terrorism, or the british in terms of transparency.
In the case of a private placement, Saudi Aramco would consider, however, joining the stock Exchange of Riyadh, the Tadawul, the next year, or even next to the international then, not before 2019. No final decision has however been taken yet, says the FT, and the ipo initially envisaged it could always intervene in 2018.