Will Japan Turn Its Back On The Aramco IPO?

3 2019 shows a sign of Saudi Aramco's initial public offering during a press conference by the state company in the eastern Saudi Arabian region of Dhahran.- Saudi Aramco confirmed it planned to list on the Riyadh

The kingdom's plan to sell part of the company is part of a wider economic overhaul aimed at raising new streams of revenue for the oil-dependent country, particularly as oil prices struggle to reach the $75 to $80 price range per barrel analysts say is needed to balance Saudi Arabia's budget.

Bankers think the long-awaited flotation will value Aramco at $1.5-2 trillion, making the stock market listing the biggest ever.

"The targeted percentage of offer shares allocable to individual investors will be up to 0.5% of the shares", the prospectus said.

The prospectus said the offering period will start on Sunday, November 17, ending on November 28 for individual investors and on December 4 for institutional investors.

Saudi Arabia's oil firm Aramco is an important crude oil supplier to Japan, holding more than a third of Japanese imports.

Among the risks highlighted in the prospectus were the potential for terrorist attacks and the potential for encountering antitrust legislation, as well as the right of the Saudi government to decide maximum crude output and direct Aramco to undertake projects outside its core business.

Aramco's low-priced oil production and its enormous reserves have helped transform the kingdom into one of the world's top 20 economies, but the state's control of the company carries a number of risks for investors.

Aramco may also change its dividend policy without prior notice to its minority shareholders, it said.


The government will then have a lockup period of a year on further share sales after this initial period.

The sale of the company, first mooted four years ago, has been overshadowed by delays and criticism of corporate transparency at Saudi Arabia's crown jewel.

The Russia-China Investment Fund is working to attract Chinese investors to Aramco's planned IPO, the head of Russia's RDIF sovereign wealth fund said on Thursday. However, recent reports have suggested Saudi Aramco could its IPO into 2019 or even in favor of selling private shares to sovereign wealth funds.

It was initially thought about 5% of Aramco would be sold, but the final figure is now expected to be half that.

The valuation would be nearly twice that of Microsoft, now the world's most valuable listed company, and seven times that of Exxon Mobil Corp, the biggest listed oil major by market capitalisation.

The oil and gasoline firm had features of $111 billion final yr, way more than Apple, Royal Dutch Shell and Exxon Mobil put collectively.

In the first nine months of this year, Aramco's net profit dropped 18 percent to $68.2 billion.

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