The Egyptian government said that banks advising on its own long-awaited sales of stakes in-state companies are urging it to take the looming listing of Saudi Aramco into account, a shift in the North African nation’s plans to raise about EGP 80 billion $4.95 billion) from all its offers and bring in much-needed foreign investment, reported Bloomberg.
Saudi Aramco has not given a date for its initial public offering (IPO) but reports this week said that the oil giant will start trading on Tadawul on 11 December 2019.
Hisham Tawfik, the Egyptian Public Enterprise Minister, said, “ Saudi Aramco is the biggest IPO in the world and we should take it into consideration when deciding the timing of our offerings, this is the message we got from the investment banks.”
While Abou Kir fertilisers & Chemical Industries and Alexandria Container & Cargo Handling are both almost ready to sell stakes, Tawfik said authorities will meet advisers soon to discuss the timing. Tawfik did not specify whether that could mean bringing forward the sales to before the reported date of Saudi Aramco’s offering or pushing them further back.
NI Capital, the Government’s investment bank and adviser on the sales said that EFG-Hermes Holding, and Citigroup are managing Alexandria Container & Cargo’s offering. CI Capital & Renaissance Capital are managing Abou Kir.
Officials seek to offer stakes ranging from 15 to 30 per cent in more than 20 firms in sectors including petrochemicals, oil as well as finance and real estate.
After several delays, the government kicked off the programme with an additional 4.5 per cent stake sale in tobacco monopoly, Eastern Company. Abou Kir and Alexandria Container & Cargo are next in line.
Earlier plans to offer the companies were pushed back for various reasons, including the lacklustre performance of one private company’s IPO as well as a general downturn in the investment climate.
Tawfik also said a sale of part of the Government’s stake in property developer Heliopolis Housing is expected to be ready in the first quarter of 2020. Current shareholders have approved handing over management to a strategic investor that takes a 10 per cent stake from the 22 to 25 per cent it will offer, said Tawfik.