StanChart, BNP among banks said to be added to Saudi Aramco bond

Aramco is in talks to buy 70% of Sabic from the Public Investment Fund, the country’s sovereign wealth fund, for about US$70 billion. (Bloomberg pic)

DUBAI: Standard Chartered Plc and BNP Paribas SA are among about a dozen banks likely to be added as co-managers for Saudi Aramco’s landmark international bond sale, people with knowledge of the matter said.

Two Japanese lenders – Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group Inc., Mizuho Financial Group Inc. – as well as Samba Financial Group and Gulf International Bank BSC are among those being appointed, according to the people, who asked not to be identified because the information is private. The banks have yet to be formally notified, they said.

Aramco declined to comment.

Saudi Aramco picked JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Morgan Stanley to manage the sale, its first-ever international dollar-bond offering, to fund the acquisition of petrochemical giant Saudi Basic Industries Corp., people with knowledge of the matter said on Thursday.

The world’s largest oil producer could raise about US$10 billion to help fund the Sabic deal, Saudi Energy Minister Khalid Al-Falih said last month. The deal would force Aramco to disclose its accounts to investors for the first time since its nationalization about four decades ago.

Aramco is in talks to buy 70% of Sabic from the Public Investment Fund, the country’s sovereign wealth fund, for about US$70 billion. A bond issue could raise between US$10 billion and US$15 billion, fund managers and analysts said Thursday.

JPMorgan and Morgan Stanley will also act as bookrunners for the offering, along with Citigroup Inc., HSBC Holdings Plc and National Commercial Bank, with a sale expected in the first half, people familiar with the matter said last week.