(Reuters) - British officials have been informed by their Saudi counterparts that oil giant Saudi Aramco’s (IPO-ARMO.SE) initial public offering is likely to be delayed until 2019, the Financial Times reported.
The Saudi government had targeted a market listing by the second half of 2018, but preparedness for the offering and also willingness for a simultaneous or sequential flotation on a foreign exchange had been questioned, the FT reported, citing sources.
London still had a good chance to secure the listing, which would value the company at $2 trillion, but a foreign flotation would likely happen only in 2019 at the earliest, according to the FT.
New York and London have been front-runners to host the company’s international flotation, alongside a Riyadh listing.
Saudi Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih said in an interview with CNN last week that he was concerned about the risks that Aramco would run into by choosing New York as the venue for its $100 billion market listing.
The state-run oil company is expected to sell about 5 percent of Aramco in what would likely be the world’s biggest IPO.
Saudi Arabian Oil Co, known as Saudi Aramco, was not immediately available for comment.
Reporting by Sangameswaran S in Bengaluru; Editing by Peter Cooney