Saudi Aramco may be preparing to enlist a boutique bank to help roll out its first ever public offering.
Sources told Bloomberg that Saudi Aramco has met with Rothschild & Co., Lazard Ltd. and Moelis & Co. over the past weeks to discuss the company’s IPO plans.
The sources added that Saudi Aramco could select a bank sometime this month but no decision has been made yet.
The winning bank will help the state-owned oil giant select underwriters for the offering, select venues for the listing and help with roll out the IPO, Bloomberg said.
Rothschild & Co., Lazard Ltd. and Moelis & Co have not commented on the matter.
Saudi Aramco announced in January it had begun studying “various options to allow broad public participation in its equity” in either the company as a whole or a bundle of its downstream subsidiaries.
Saudi officials have said any offering will likely see the kingdom’s government retain a majority stake in the company.
Sources told Bloomberg late last month that Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ and Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group Inc. were set to expand lending to Saudi Aramco ahead of the IPO.
The sources told Bloomberg the lending boost was part of an effort to be involved with the offering.
Saudi Aramco has not announced where it will list the offering or when the IPO will hit the market.
The offering is expected to be one of the largest initial public offerings ever made and generate billions of dollars in fees for the world’s largest investment banks.
In an interview given earlier this year, Saudi Arabian Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman pegged Saudi Aramco’s value at more than $2 trillion earlier this year.
“If 1 percent of Aramco is offered to the market, just 1 percent, it will be the biggest IPO on earth,” Prince Mohammed said in an interview seen by Reuters in April.