Saudi Aramco is considering splitting its IPO into two stages, introducing a portion of its shares on the Saudi Stock Exchange later this year, and following up with an international offering in 2020 or 2021, the Wall Street Journal reported on Thursday, citing people familiar with the plans.
Tokyo is the likely venue for the second phase of the proposed plan, the WSJ report says, citing advisers and officials, but a source told Al Arabiya that the date and place depend on the market’s circumstances and the decision of the owner.
If Tokyo is confirmed, that would be a setback for London, New York, and Hong Kong, which have all vied for a slice of the IPO.
Saudi Aramco is now considering a plan to raise as much as $50 billion in a domestic listing, the Journal said citing unnamed sources.
The planned IPO forms the cornerstone of a reform program envisaged by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman to wean the Saudi economy off its reliance on oil.
It aims to raise up to $100 billion based on a $2 trillion valuation of the company.
Earlier this month, Aramco said its first half net income for 2019 slipped nearly 12 percent to $46.9 billion on lower crude prices.
It was the first time the company has published half-year financial results and comes after Aramco opened its accounts for the first time in April, revealing itself to be the world’s most profitable company.