Saudi Aramco and the country aren’t ready for an IPO that could raise $100 billion but also bring unprecedented scrutiny to the company, the Wall St. Journal reported, citing Saudi officials and people close to the process.
“Everyone is almost certain it is not going to happen,” said a senior executive at Aramco, speaking of the IPO. A company spokesman declined to comment, and representatives for the Saudi energy ministry and the government didn’t respond to questions, the Journal said.
The company invited law firms to Dubai to pitch for a possible role in the IPO earlier this year and later told them they had no plans to make a decision anytime soon, people involved in the process said Saudi officials say they have determined that listing on a large stock exchange in New York, London or Hong Kong would carry too many legal risks.
They have also soured on a backup plan of listing only a tiny part of the company on the Saudi stock exchange Tadawul A decision on what to do rests in the hands of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, the Journal said.