Saudi Aramco finance chief who helped steer IPO steps down

Former chief financial officer Khalid Al-Dabbagh was at the forefront of the roadshow for the listing on Riyadh’s bourse.

Saudi Aramco's initial public offering in 2019 and its debut international bond issuance shortly beforehand were a key part of Saudi Arabia's plans to open up the economy to foreign investors [File: Christopher Pike/Bloomberg]
Saudi Aramco's initial public offering in 2019 and its debut international bond issuance shortly beforehand were a key part of Saudi Arabia's plans to open up the economy to foreign investors [File: Christopher Pike/Bloomberg]

Saudi Aramco has named Ziad al-Murshed as chief financial officer, replacing Khalid al-Dabbagh who helped lead the oil giant through its 2019 initial public offering.

Al-Dabbagh, 59, will join the company’s board and retain the chairmanship of Aramco’s chemicals subsidiary, Saudi Basic Industries Corp., according to people familiar with the matter, who asked not to be identified.

Al-Murshed, previously Aramco’s vice president for fuels and lubricants and also for international operations, will initially become acting CFO. Bloomberg first reported the news on Wednesday.

The company holds an annual general meeting on Thursday at 7:00 p.m. local time.

The IPO and Aramco’s debut international bond issuance shortly beforehand were a key part of the kingdom’s plans to open up the economy to foreign investors.

Al-Dabbagh, who became senior vice president of finance, strategy and development in 2018, was at the forefront of the roadshow for the listing on Riyadh’s bourse. The $29 billion IPO was the largest ever, though the company failed to hit the $2 trillion valuation that Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, Saudi Arabia’s de facto ruler, had hoped for.

Al-Murshed first joined Aramco in 1991 and has previously overseen acquisitions for the company, based in Dhahran in eastern Saudi Arabia. A chemical engineer by training, he is also on the board of Sabic, S-Oil Corp. in South Korea and Houston-based Motiva Enterprises LLC.

Aramco last reshuffled its top management in August, when it created a corporate development unit, led by senior vice president Abdulaziz Al Gudaimi and focusing on “portfolio optimization.” Since then, the firm has raised $12.4 billion from selling a stake in its oil pipeline unit. It is planning to sell part of its gas pipeline business next, people familiar with the situation told Bloomberg.

Source: Bloomberg

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