Saudi Aramco aims to buy controlling stake in SABIC: Sources

Chief Executive Officer of ARAMCO, Amin Nasser in Dhahran, Saudi Arabia, December 13, 2017. (Reuters)
Updated 24 July 2018
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Saudi Aramco aims to buy controlling stake in SABIC: Sources

  • Riyadh-listed SABIC, the world’s fourth-biggest petrochemicals firm, has a market capitalization of 385.2 billion Saudi riyals
  • The potential acquisition would affect the time frame of Aramco’s planned initial public offering set for later this year

DUBAI: Saudi Aramco aims to buy a controlling stake in petrochemical maker SABIC, possibly taking the entire 70 percent stake owned by Saudi Arabia’s sovereign wealth fund, two sources familiar with the matter told Reuters.
Late last week Aramco confirmed a Reuters report that it was working on a possible purchase of a “strategic stake” in Saudi Basic Industries Corp. (SABIC) from the Public Investment Fund, the kingdom’s top sovereign wealth fund.
Aramco’s initial thinking is to buy the full stake owned by the Public Investment Fund (PIF), but if that fails to materialize Aramco could end up with a stake in SABIC of more than 50 percent, making it a majority owner, the sources said.
No final decision has been made on the size of the stake as the discussions are still at a very early stage, they added.
Aramco declined to comment. The PIF did not respond to a Reuters request for comment.
Riyadh-listed SABIC, the world’s fourth-biggest petrochemicals firm, has a market capitalization of 385.2 billion Saudi riyals ($103 billion).
The potential acquisition would affect the time frame of Aramco’s planned initial public offering set for later this year, the state oil giant’s chief executive, Amin Nasser, said in a TV interview on Friday.
Aramco plans to boost investments in refining and petrochemicals to secure new markets and sees growth in chemicals as central to its downstream strategy to cut the risk of an oil demand slowdown.
Aramco plans to raise its refining capacity to between 8 million and 10 million barrels per day, from around 5 million bpd now, and double its petrochemicals production by 2030.
Aramco, the world’s largest oil producer, pumps around 10 million bpd of crude oil.


Tesla drops cheapest variants, pushing up prices in China

Updated 3 min 20 sec ago
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Tesla drops cheapest variants, pushing up prices in China

  • The automaker said it expected production and deliveries to continue growing in Q3

BEIJING: Tesla Inc. has dropped the standard-range variants of its Model X and Model S from its product lineup and adjusted prices across its range, in a sales push that comes days after the US electric vehicle maker reported record deliveries.
To simplify its offerings, the automaker on Tuesday limited variants of its Model X sport-utility vehicle and Model S sedan to “Long Range” and the more expensive “Performance.” It also trimmed the price of its now entry-level Long Range variants.
The discontinuation of the standard-range variants, however, means a rise in starting prices — to $84,990 for the Model X and $79,990 for the Model S, excluding potential buying incentives. Tesla also lowered the starting price of its mass-market Model 3 to $38,990.
“To make purchasing our vehicles even simpler, we are standardizing our global vehicle lineup and streamlining the number of trim packages offered for Model S, Model X and Model 3,” Tesla said. “We are also adjusting our pricing to continue to improve affordability for customers.”

HIGHLIGHTS

• Drops standard-range variants of Model X and S.

• Move means entry X, S cars are pricier long-range variants.

• Tesla delivered record number of EVs in the second quarter.

• Tesla is building a plant in China initially for Model 3 cars.

Earlier this month, Tesla said global deliveries of its three models in the second quarter of this year rose 51 percent from the previous quarter to a record 95,200 vehicles. The Model 3 accounted for about 80 percent of the total, underscoring the vehicle’s role as the linchpin of Tesla’s growth strategy. The automaker said it expected production and deliveries to continue growing in Q3.
In China, the world’s largest market for electric vehicles, Tesla’s changes on Tuesday pushed the starting price of its Model X to 790,900 yuan ($115,068) and Model S to 776,900 yuan.