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Vying For Aramco Deal Fees Means Twiddling Your Thumbs For Hours In The Waiting Room Then Being Told You're Pitching A 22 Year-Old

Bust out the Sudoku, it's gonna be a long night.
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By Afas1407 (Own work by the original uploader) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Photo: Afas1407, via Wikimedia Commons

As you may have heard, oil behemoth Saudi Aramco is planning an initial public offering and at stake for banks is approximately a gajillion dollars (real figure: $1 billion). While courting a client has always been an exercise in checking one's ego at the door, this amount of money on the table means flying to Saudi Arabia and being kept waiting, in several instances with surely more to come, for hours on end and then finally being told that while neither the CEO or Chairman will be seeing you, surely a young junior banker will do the trick.

Ever since Saudi Arabia indicated in January that it’s eyeing a public listing for Aramco, senior bankers at the world’s largest financial institutions have been swarming around the company’s headquarters in the coastal city of Dhahran seeking to ingratiate themselves with officials in the kingdom and win a piece of the biggest investment-banking deal ever...Some bankers have spent hours waiting to sit down with Chief Executive Amin Nasser or Chairman Khalid al-Falih, only to be told they would be meeting more junior Aramco officials instead, according to people familiar with the process.

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