Saudi petchems giant Sabic is considering an IPO of its specialty chemicals unit. The company, in which Aramco bought sovereign wealth fund PIF’s 70% stake for $69.1bn earlier this year, is speaking with advisors with a view to a potential lusting of the business “as early as 2021,” Bloomberg reports. Talks are “at an early stage.” Sabic’s specialties business includes a leading stake in Swiss catalysts and packaging additives manufacturer Clariant and small performance resins plants taken over in an $11.4bn purchase of GE Plastics in 2007 MEES, 2 February 2018).

The IPO plan appears an about-turn from Sabic’s decision in March to increase its stake in Clariant to 31.5% from 24.99%, for which it paid $2.5bn before a $400mn write-down of the deal in Q3 2019 results (MEES, 1 November 2019). Sabic at the time explained the increased Clariant stake as “part of Sabic’s growth strategy in specialties, to achieve a leadership position among global peers” in the specialties business and “increase this segment’s contribution to Sabic” (MEES, 6 March). (CONTINUED - 165 WORDS)