Moelis Co. will soon hire staff in Saudi Arabia as it sees the kingdom attracting more foreign investors and benefiting from an energy supercycle. None Asia s Richest Man Looks at Walton Family Playbook on Succession
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The boutique financial adviser, founded by Wall Street veteran Ken Moelis, wants to open an office in Riyadh, the Saudi capital, and do more deals as the world's biggest oil exporter privatizes some companies and the stock market sees a burst of initial public offerings.
Eric Cantor, Vice Chairman, said in an interview that we are waiting for a final stamp on our license. Part of that is hiring Saudis. He didn't say how many people the bank wants to employ.
The Saudi economy, the largest in the Middle East, is growing at a faster rate than in almost a decade thanks to crude prices rising this year to around $80 a barrel. They could go even higher because many countries are cutting back on fossil fuel investments to meet climate goals, according to Cantor.
Cantor, who was the majority leader for the Republicans in the House of Representatives until 2014, joined Moelis after he joined the House of Representatives in 2014, said that they were poised for a supercycle in oil and gas.
Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman is working to diversify the economy from oil to oil and create new industries from artificial intelligence to tourism and electric vehicles. Foreign banks in the non-energy sector can get more opportunities even if the fees they get for deals are low by global standards.
This region is one of the most dynamic economic places in the world right now because it is changing and it is opening up, said Cantor in Abu Dhabi, the capital of the neighboring United Arab Emirates. There is increasing interest from U.S. companies wanting to come to the region and Saudi Arabia is the largest market. Moelis has been doing business in the Persian Gulf for years, and its founder was named Ken of Arabia after winning a mandate to work on Saudi Aramco's record IPO in 2019. It was hired by the state energy company to help it sell billions of dollars of assets, including pipelines.
Moelis, like many other international firms, has its main office in Dubai for the Middle East. Saudi Arabia wants firms to locate their regional headquarters in Riyadh.
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