Saudi Aramco's debut international bond issuance has generated over $85 billion-worth of orders from investors, Bloomberg has reported.
The business portal noted that demand is high notwithstanding the fact that yields offered may dip below those paid out on Saudi sovereign debt, explaining that demand "reflects intense investor appetite for high-quality paper" following a temporary turn away from the kingdom over the Khashoggi scandal last year.
The company opened up a six-stage bond sale on Monday, with investors across Europe, Asia and North America pledging over $30 billion on the first day. Orders tracked upwards to $85 billion by Tuesday, with pricing expected later Tuesday.
Marcus Chenevix, an analyst at the TS Lombard market research group, told Reuters that the bond was being issued "for two reasons: to establish Aramco's status as an independent corporate identity, and to enable the transfer of wealth out of the company."
Other observers suggested the issuance was a "relationship building exercise" ahead of Aramco's planned 2021 initial public offering.