Starlings gather in murmurs and geese in gaggles. Corporate financiers flocking to promote big share sales need a collective noun. A “validation of investment bankers” perhaps? Clients find comfort in super-syndicates. Saudi Aramco, for example, has hired 25 banks (plus three “special advisers”) to get the world’s biggest-ever initial public offering (IPO) off the ground.
The banks could have $60bn of equity to price, underwrite and distribute, at upper estimates. Still, most of them are well versed in working together. Uber retained 29 banks for its own float. Alibaba came to market in 2014 with 35 little helpers.