The President and CEO of Saudi Aramco Amin Nasser slept a happy man after overseeing the world’s largest Initial Public Offering. But above that, the listing has placed him at the helm of the most profitable company globally. As soon as the company’s shares start trading on the Riyadh stock exchange in the course of the month, Mr. Nasser, who heads the company will no longer have absolute control over it due to key political figures’ interest including the crown prince and his half-brother, Energy Minister Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman.
The company will be closing the year in style having survived one of its most challenging years since it was founded nearly nine decades ago. Aramco’s chief, who’s being seen by many as a skillful survivor, is currently in his 60th year in the petroleum engineering career.
The engineer showcased his managerial dexterity on Sept. 14 when the company’s oil wells were attacked, knocking out more than half of the state-owned firm’s oil production. However, just under 11 days, the Nasser-led team resumed operations.
Mr. Nasser was also in charge of the company’s first bond issue of $12 billion and by the end of the issue, Aramco had received over 10 times more subscribers than anticipated.
From that April fundraiser, Nasser earned the nickname “$100 billion man,” from a deal that saw Aramco hit the capital markets headlines for the first time since Saudi’s 2018 ostracism over the assassination of Jamal Khashoggi, a local columnist.
While the IPO has been a hard sell to international investors, it has marked one of Nasser’s biggest milestone in his decades of working at Aramco.
During a Bloomberg TV interview, his counterpart at French oil major Total SA Mr. Patrick Pouyanne said: “Amin is a very experienced CEO,” adding that, “There is no precedent” for a deal like the Aramco IPO. We have never seen such a huge company being listed.”
Saudi Aramco’s stake in the global oil markets is undisputed: one out of every 10 barrels in the market comes from the company’s reserves, making it the world’s most profitable entity.
Now that the firm’s IPO concluded yesterday, all eyes will be on the kingdom’s crown prince as he will be making key decisions regarding productions, supply, among others. The crown prince recently flexed his powers in the company when he appointed Yasir Al-Rumayyan as Aramco’s chairman. Mr. Al-Rumayyan is seen as a pivotal figure in the kingdom’s oil giant due to his role as the head of the sovereign wealth fund.