Saudi Aramco has delayed the planned launch of its initial public offering, until the oil giant publises its quarterly results that will provide clarity on the impact of last month's attacks on its oil facilities.
The listing, which is central to Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman's ambitious economic reform plans, has been dogged by delays and doubts over whether it can achieve a $2tn valuation desired by the kingdom's heir apparent.
"The company continues to engage with the shareholders on IPO readiness activities," Aramco said in a statement. "The company is ready and timing will depend on market conditions and be at a time of the shareholders choosing." It's not clear when Aramco plans to release third-quarter results.
News of the delay was first reported by the Financial Times.
The world's largest oil firm was to announce plans next week to float a 1% to 2% stake on the kingdom's Tadawul market before a possible international listing. However, after a Sept. 14 attack on its Abqaiq and Khurais plants knocked out half the crude output of the world's top exporter, Aramco wants to reassure investors by presenting results covering the period.
Earlier this month, Energy Minister Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman said Saudi Arabia had fully restored oil output, which allowed it to focus on the IPO.
The IPO of Aramco, the world's most profitable company, is the centerpiece of Saudi Arabia's Vision 2030 plan to diversify the kingdom's economy away from its reliance on oil. However, the targeted $2 trillion valuation for Aramco has been met by deep skepticism from investors and analysts.