The public issue of Saudi Arabia’s state oil company Saudi Aramco shattered all records to become the world’s biggest ever initial public offering (IPO) after the company priced its shares at the high end of the target range, raising a massive $25.6 billion. The sum raised by the oil giant just managed to surpass the $25 billion garnered by Alibaba in 2014 when it entered Wall Street. Here’s a list of the 10 IPOs that were known to be the world’s largest before the Saudi Aramco issue hit the markets:
1. Alibaba raised $25 billion in September 2014
Alibaba Group Holding Ltd, a diversified online e-commerce company based in China, went public in September 2014 to raise a whopping $21.8 billion. But four days later, underwriters exercised an option to sell more shares, bringing the total IPO size to $25 billion.
2. SoftBank Corp. raised $23.5 billion in December 2018
SoftBank Corp raised a total of $23.5 billion in December 2018, making it Japan’s largest ever IPO and placing it just behind Alibaba’s record-setting $25 billion debut on the New York Stock Exchange in 2014.
3. Agricultural Bank of China Ltd raised $22.1 billion in July 2010
Agricultural Bank of China Ltd, also known as AgBank, went public on 7 July 2010, raising $19.2 billion initially. Later, AgBank also increased the size of its IPO to $22.1 billion.
4. ICBC Bank raised $21.9 billion in October 2006
ICBC Bank, or Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (listed on the Shanghai Stock Exchange and the Hong Kong Stock Exchange), went public on 20 October 2006, fetching a total of almost $19.1 billion. On January 19, 2007, ICBC exercised an overallotment option that allowed the company to lift its IPO size to $21.9 billion.
5. General Motors raised $20.1 billion in November 2010
General Motors made its debut on 16 November 2010, after emerging from a bankruptcy filing one year earlier. The US-based car manufacturer raised $20.1 billion in its IPO, the largest ever for any US‑based company.
6. NTT Mobile (Japan) raised $18.4 billion in October 1998
NTT DOCOMO, a Tokyo‑based telecommunications player, went to the public market on 22 October 1998, raising just under $18.4 billion.
7. Visa raised $17.9 billion in March 2008
Visa Inc., a debit and credit card processing company, entered the public market on 18 March 2008, and raised $17.9 billion at the time when the global financial crisis was at its peak.
8. American International Assurance raised $17.8 billion in October 2010
AIA, a Hong Kong-based investment and insurance company, was offered to the public on 21 October 2010. It raised over $17.8 billion and became the largest independent, publicly listed pan-Asian life insurance group.
9. Enel Group (Italy) raised $17.4 billion in November 1999
Enel S.p.A. went public on 1 November 1999 raising almost $17.4 billion. This Italian company competes in the gas and electric market in Europe and the Americas.
10. Facebook raised $16 billion in May 2012
Facebook was one of the most hyped IPOs in history. It listed on 1 May 2012, and raised just over $16 billion.