| KHOBAR, Saudi Arabia/DUBAI, March 13
KHOBAR, Saudi Arabia/DUBAI, March 13 Saudi
Aramco has chosen U.S.-based FTI Consulting
as global media adviser for what is expected to be the
world's largest initial public share offer, industry sources
In recent months the Saudi national oil giant has been
appointing advisers to help arrange the offer. Investment banks
Moelis & Co, Evercore, JPMorgan Chase & Co
and Morgan Stanley will play roles, and more banks will
be chosen, the sources said.
FTI "will support Aramco's communications team ahead of the
sale to handle the storm of the IPO", said one of the sources.
The sources said FTI's main competition in the bidding was
international consulting firm Brunswick Group. Contacted by
Reuters, Aramco said it "does not comment on rumour or
speculation". Officials at Brunswick and FTI declined to
Aramco's corporate affairs department has a headcount of
over 200 people. It handles the company's publications, media
queries and events among other tasks, and supports the ministry
of energy with staffing and speech writing.
"Aramco has avoided frequent contact with the international
media and has preferred in the past to let the ministry of
petroleum handle such relationships," said Sadad al-Husseini, a
former senior executive at Saudi Aramco.
"But now with the growing focus on the IPO and proliferation
of related rumours and speculation, it is clear the company
wants to manage these contacts in a more effective and
professional manner," said Husseini, now an energy consultant.
(Additional reporting by Hadeel El Sayegh in Dubai and David
French in New York; Editing by Andrew Torchia, Greg Mahlich)