Saudi Aramco makes IPO offer to Malaysia’s Petronas
Saudi Aramco has approached Malaysian state energy company Petronas to participate in Aramco’s initial public offering (IPO), Petronas said yesterday, as the Middle Eastern oil giant seeks cornerstone investors for the listing. The Saudi government plans to sell 2 per cent of state-run Aramco, the world’s most profitable company, in a domestic listing on Dec.
11, Reuters said quoting three sources familiar with the matter. The approach comes as Petronas, officially known as Petroliam Nasional Bhd, nears the start of commercial operations at a $27 billion refinery and petrochemical project built jointly with Aramco in southern Malaysia.
“We have been recently approached by representatives of Saudi Aramco to consider Petronas’ participation in its initial public offering exercise,” Petronas, the Malaysian government’s cash cow, told Reuters. “However, we will not be providing any further comments on this matter at this time.” Aramco’s much-vaunted IPO was delayed as deal advisers said they needed more time to lock in cornerstone, or anchor, investors such as sovereign wealth funds.
In 2016, stateowned Postal Savings Bank of China sold 77% of its $7.4 billion (5.74 billion pounds) IPO to such backers. Reuters reported in September that Aramco had approached Abu Dhabi Investment Authority, Singapore’s GIC and other sovereign wealth funds to invest in the domestic leg of its listing. Abu Dhabi’s state investor Mubadala Investment Co has also been approached by Aramco’s advisers.