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Saudi Aramco gives nine banks top roles on world’s biggest IPO: sources

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Saudi Aramco has hired nine banks as joint global coordinators to lead its planned initial public offering (IPO), slated to be the world's largest, two sources familiar with the matter told Reuters on Wednesday.

FILE PHOTO: Logo of Saudi Aramco is seen at the 20th Middle East Oil & Gas Show and Conference (MOES 2017) in Manama, Bahrain, March 7, 2017. REUTERS/Hamad I Mohammed/File Photo

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DUBAI: Saudi Aramco has hired nine banks as joint global coordinators to lead its planned initial public offering (IPO), slated to be the world's largest, two sources familiar with the matter told Reuters on Wednesday.

The mandates have been heavily sought by the world's biggest investment banks for a transaction which, according to Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman's initial plans, could generate around US$100 billion for Saudi Arabia's state coffers.

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The kingdom plans to list 1per cent of the state oil giant – the world's largest oil company – on the Riyadh stock exchange before the end of this year and another 1per cent in 2020, sources told Reuters this week, as initial steps ahead of a public sale of around 5per cent of Aramco.

Aramco has selected JPMorgan , Morgan Stanley and Saudi Arabia's National Commercial Bank , which were previously working on the share sale before it was paused last year, the sources said, declining to be identified due to commercial sensitivities.

It has also chosen Bank of America Merrill Lynch , Goldman Sachs , Credit Suisse , Citi , HSBC and Saudi Arabia's Samba , they added.

JPMorgan, Bank of America, Credit Suisse and HSBC declined to comment. Aramco and the remaining banks did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

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The IPO plan has rapidly gained momentum in recent days with the appointment of the head of the kingdom's PIF sovereign wealth fund, Yasser al-Rumayyan, as Aramco's new chairman.

Rumayyan, a close ally of Prince Mohammed, took over from former energy minister Khalid al-Falih in a move to separate Aramco from the ministry, a step Saudi officials have said was important to pave the way for the IPO.

Bankers have been courting Saudi Arabia to secure roles in the transaction, which has faced repeated delays,

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