Daily Management Review

Saudi Aramco to buy up to 70% stake in SABIC petrochemical company


State Oil Company of Saudi Arabia Saudi Arabian Oil Co. (Saudi Aramco) intends to acquire a controlling stake in the petrochemical company SABIC, and possibly all 70% of shares owned by the sovereign fund of Saudi Arabia. This is reported by Reuters with reference to two sources familiar with the situation.

At the end of last week Aramco confirmed that it was working on a possible purchase of a strategic stake in Saudi Basic Industries Corp (SABIC) from the sovereign fund of the Kingdom of Public Investment Fund (PIF).

Initially, Aramco decided to acquire all 70% of SABIC shares owned by PIF, sources told Reuters. If this is not possible, Aramco can buy a stake of more than 50% in the petrochemical company, becoming its majority shareholder.

The final decision on the amount of the acquired stake is not accepted, since the negotiations are still at a very early stage, the interlocutors of the agency specified.

The market capitalization of SABIC, the fourth largest petrochemical company in the world, is SAR 385.2 billion ($ 103 billion).

Aramco seeks to increase investment in refining and petrochemicals. The oil giant plans to increase its processing capacity to 8-10 million barrels per day from about 5 million bpd at present and double the production of petrochemicals by 2030.

The potential acquisition of a stake in SABIC will affect the timing of the planned IPO of Saudi Aramco, said CEO of the oil company Amin Nasser in a television interview on Friday.

Saudi Aramco plans to sell up to 5% of the shares during the IPO, which is expected to become the largest in history.

The share placement is part of Visions-2030, the plan of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman to diversify the economy, create the world's largest sovereign investment fund and reduce dependence on hydrocarbons. Riyadh expects to raise a record $ 100 billion within the IPO.

source: reuters.com