Saudi Aramco has made first selections for financial partners in its rejuvenated attempt to file for an initial public offering (IPO), choosing Bermuda-based Lazard Ltd. and Moelis & Co. as advisors, people with knowledge of the matter told Bloomberg.
“The boutique investment banks have started preparatory work on the offering, according to the people, who asked not to be identified because the information is private. They are expected to play a key role in the listing, including in the selection of underwriters and listing venues as well as working to ensure Aramco can secure its valuation expectations, the people said,” according to Bloomberg.
Moelis & Co. was chosen before by Saudi Aramco in 2017 to advise on the IPO as the sole advisor. Now, according to Bloomberg, it will share the role with Lazard Ltd. Lazard is a financial advisory and asset management firm that engages in investment banking, asset management, and other financial services primarily with institutional clients.
Earlier this week, Reuters reported that Saudi Aramco has formally asked major banks to submit proposals for potential roles in its planned initial public offering, citing two sources said.
Saudi Aramco is the world’s most profitable company, dwarfing Apple, Inc. and other multinational companies.
Over the last year, the company slowly started opening up its books to the outside world, revealing its financial information as it marches toward a potential IPO as part of the Kingdom’s Vision 2030 social and economic reform plans.
In March, Saudi Aramco signed a share purchase agreement to acquire 70% majority stake in SABIC from the Public Investment Fund of Saudi Arabia for $69.1 billion.