Saudi Aramco outsripped American behemoths including Apple Inc. and Exxon Mobil Corp., to become the world's most profitable company in 2018. The state-run oil giant's financial books revealed that it earned a net income of $111.1 billion last year, confirming that it is the world's most profitable company by far, as per extracts from Aramco's accounts published by Fitch Ratings.
The company generated earnings before interest, tax and depreciation of $224 billion last year, Fitch said Monday, which is remarkably above the $82 billion of Apple or the $40 billion of Exxon Mobil. The credit rating agency graded Aramco as A+ ahead of its debut in the international bond market.
This is the first credit rating for Aramco giving a first glimpse into its accounts which were a secret since the company's nationalization in the late 1970s. The financial records made public let investors evaluate the possible value of the company's proposed Initial Public offering (IPO) which was to launch in 2018 but was postponed until 2021.
Aramco has directed banks to hold a roadshow for dollar-denominated notes from April 1, possibly including tranches from three to 30 years, sources told Bloomberg. The company is planning to raise debt in part to pay for the acquisition of a majority stake in domestic petro-chemical group Sabic, which is worth about $69 billion.
As Saudi's kingdom is heavily dependent on Aramco to fund its social and military spending, the accounts give the investors a unique insight into the kingdom's financial health as well.
(With inputs from agency)