Saudi Aramco public offering seen delayed this year amid struggle over valuation: Report

Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman
Fayez Nureldine | AFP | Getty Images
Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman

The long-awaited initial public offering of Saudi Arabia's massive oil company could be delayed until 2019 at the earliest, the Financial Times reported on Sunday, citing British officials briefed on the matter.

Saudi Aramco IPO was expected to come to market sometime this year, potentially the largest ever. However, the FT stated that advisors are struggling to arrive at the $2 trillion valuation sought by Saudi's crown prince, Mohammed bin Salman.

Last week, Bloomberg reported that Saudi Arabian energy minister also suggested the flotation might be delayed. If so, it would represent a setback for the world's largest oil producer's efforts to reform its economy, as the Aramco IPO is seen as a linchpin in its strategy.

According to the FT, people briefed on the negotiations say London was a prime contender to land the actual listing. The battle between where Aramco's stock would list is seen as a horse race between the New York Stock Exchange and the London Stock Exchange.

The full Financial Times story can be found on its website.