Saudi Aramco’s executives met officials of Abu Dhabi Investment Authority (ADIA) on Monday to discuss a potential investment in the oil giant’s share sale that could raise as much as $25.6 billion, three sources familiar with the talks said.
Aramco has struggled to attract international investors for its IPO, which could be potentially the world’s biggest. It has also approached Kuwait Investment Authority (KIA) and Singapore’s GIC.
The meeting between Aramco and ADIA, one of the world’s biggest sovereign wealth funds, was separate to an investor roadshow in Abu Dhabi, the second leg of a Gulf marketing effort by Aramco and its advisors.
A similar roadshow was held in Dubai on Sunday.
A spokesman for ADIA declined to comment. Aramco has said it does not comment on specific investor meetings.
“Aramco, have stepped up a gear this month, but the signs are that it is unlikely to be the blockbuster sale that the Kingdom once hoped for,” said London-based Capital Economics in a note on Monday.
“And plans for this sale to be followed by an international listing seem to have lost momentum.”
The company has also cancelled marketing roadshows for its listing outside of the Gulf because of the lack of interest from foreign institutional investors.
Some investors, who attended the Aramco roadshow in Abu Dhabi on Monday, also expressed mixed feelings about investing in the deal.
Aramco’s future weight in the region's benchmark indices was a compelling reason for fund managers in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region to invest in its shares, a fund manager said after the roadshow.
But another fund manager said Aramco's dividend yield of 4.4 percent at the top end of its valuation was less attractive compared to other oil companies.
Royal Dutch Shell has a dividend yield of 6.48 percent, Refinitiv data shows.
Aramco is looking to sell 1.5 percent of the company in the deal, valuing the company between $1.6 trillion to $1.7 trillion. It has set a base dividend of $75 billion over five years.
The deal is the centerpiece of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman's plans to diversify the Saudi economy away from its reliance on oil.
“For the biggest IPO in history, it is still a wait and see approach for us, how it will perform, who's going to make the market,” said an investment advisor to high net worth investors in Abu Dhabi.
“The rich valuation, the recent attacks, the oil price, regional tensions - we are yet to get perspective on this.”
Aramco’s roadshow was led by Yassir Mufti, vice president of strategy and market analysis, and attended by members of the oil firm’s IPO team, according to an investor invite seen by Reuters.
Saudi Aramco takes unofficial IPO roadshow to Abu Dhabi to lure Gulf investorsSaudi Aramco continued its unofficial regional roadshow with a visit to Abu Dhabi on Monday as the oil giant meets with investors to discuss its ... Energy
Saudi cenbank governor says Aramco IPO not causing liquidity issues for banksSaudi Arabia’s central bank is monitoring banking indicators on a daily basis and is not seeing any impact on liquidity from Saudi ... Business
Saudi Aramco’s IPO receives 73 bln riyals in orders so far: Samba CEOSaudi Aramco’s initial public offering (IPO) has received about 73 billion riyals ($19.47 billion) in orders, Rania Nashar, chief executive ... Energy
Saudi Aramco IPO receives $17.1 bln in orders from institutional tranche: SourceThe institutional portion of Saudi Aramco’s initial public offering (IPO) on the Saudi Stock Exchange (Tadawul) is oversubscribed, having ... Energy