Following Saudi Oil Attack, Aramco Pushes Ahead With IPO Plans and Restoring Oil Production

Following Saudi Oil Attack, Aramco Pushes Ahead With IPO Plans and Restoring Oil Production


Topline: In the wake of last month’s attack on Saudi Aramco oil facilities, the state oil giant has quickly recovered, aiming to restore full production and forging ahead with its plans for what would be the world’s largest-ever IPO later this year.

  • Saudi Arabia, the world’s largest exporter of oil, will restore full production by the end of November, Aramco CEO Amin Nasser told CNBC on Wednesday.
  • The September 14 drone and missile attacks on Aramco facilities did not reduce revenue and had “no impact” on the planned public listing of the world’s biggest oil company, Nasser added.
  • Preparations for the initial public offering, which would also be the world’s largest, are forging ahead: The company is now expected to publish its IPO prospectus before the end of October, the Wall Street Journal first reported.
  • The Saudi state-owned oil giant could float 1% to 2% of its shares on its local stock exchange, the Tadawul, as early as November.
  • Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman has said he wants a $2 trillion valuation for Aramco, the world’s most profitable company, but analysts have placed that value closer to $1.5 trillion.
  • Aramco’s planned IPO is a large part of Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030 initiative—aimed at  diversifying the country’s economy and reducing its reliance on oil revenues.

Key background: The drone attack on Aramco facilities in mid-September effectively knocked out 5% of the world’s oil supply, causing oil prices to surge by as much as 20%—although they have since recovered. The U.S. and Saudi Arabia have blamed Iran for the attacks, a charge which Tehran continues to adamantly deny.

What to watch for: The success of the IPO will be closely tied to the price of oil, which is down  over the last year despite rising geopolitical tensions in the Gulf.



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