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Saudi Aramco makes investments despite a delayed IPO



The largest IPO in the world is currently taking place. The expenditures that had to be made possible may not be.

Saudi Arabia planned to bring its huge oil company, Saudi Aramco, to public markets. It should be the linchpin of a big economic vision and generate billions of dollars to secure the future of the Kingdom's economy, including huge investments in technology.

It is now postponed, leaving a large funding gap. But Saudi Arabia is pursuing alternative transactions that could ensure its dreams are not disappointed:

• Saudi Aramco is in talks to buy a large stake in Sabic, a publicly traded chemical company. The controlling shareholder of Sabic is Saudi Arabia's sovereign wealth fund, the Public Investment Fund. While the size of this potential takeover is unclear, media reports say it could be as big as $ 70 billion.

• The Public Investment Fund is in talks to raise $ 1

1 billion in bank loans from international lenders, according to the Financial Times. It would be the first time that the sovereign wealth fund had lent money.

• Saudi Aramco could still sell shares in itself. Large companies in China and Russia reportedly showed interest in investing in the past. It is not clear how much a sale would increase, but it would almost certainly lead to billions of dollars.

Read more from the New York Times:

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The Saudi government planned to sell about 5 percent of Saudi Aramco to public stock markets. If the giant oil giant had received a $ 2 trillion estimate – and there was skepticism about that number – the kingdom would have received about [100] billion dollars.

The three new moves could, if they happen, almost yield as much as Saudi Aramco's initial public offering. The Saudi government would then have the financial firepower to pursue their big economic goals, collectively known as the Vision 2030.

That means money to invest in Silicon Valley start-ups. Or to create a huge new city that uses clean energy and robots.

Or even help Elon Musk privately take Tesla. Saudi Arabia already has nearly 5 percent of the car maker, and Mr. Musk has said that it is interested in financing a buyout. But the Public Investment Fund has yet to send such a signal and is reportedly in a Tesla rival.


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