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U.S. investment banking giants Goldman Sachs and Citi are lined up to lead the initial public offering (IPO) of part of Saudi Aramco, according to reports.
The Saudi state-owned oil producer plans to list this year in what is expected to be one of the largest share offerings ever, if Aramco's target valuation of $2 trillion (£1.5 trillion) is achieved.
The two banks will be joined on the mega-deal by JP Morgan, HSBC and Morgan Stanley in global coordinator roles, with the mandates potentially finalised at some point this week, according to Bloomberg.
The appointment of advisors would mark an important step before the float, after Aramco officials were forced to reiterate their plans for a 2018 listing at the end of last year.
A decision also remains to be made on the listing venue for the IPO, with London and New York thought to be among the leading contenders for the giant share offering of around five per cent of the oil producer.
The London Stock Exchange's efforts to attract the listing have been strongly backed by the Prime Minister and the chancellor, while the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) is currently also consulting on changes to listing rules which would make it easier for Aramco to choose the UK.
An end-of-year deadline for the policy statement on the listing proposal from the FCA has passed without any update from the City watchdog.
The banks declined to comment. Saudi Aramco was contacted for comment.
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