Stock Saudi Aramco oil refinery
Saudi Aramco has pursued investment opportunities in a range of energy startups and businesses that are seen as having long-term prospects. Its venture capital division had plans to launch a $500 million fund. Image Credit: Reuters

Riyadh: Saudi Aramco appointed a new CEO to run its $500 million venture capital and investments arm. Mahdi Aladel, who formerly led the state energy producer's base oils and lubricants division, will take over as CEO of Saudi Aramco Energy Ventures.

A LinkedIn page appearing to belong to Aladel said he'd started the new role this month. Majid Mufti ran the business for the last four years.

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Aramco is the world's biggest oil exporter and provides most of the income for the kingdom. SAEV invests in early-stage oil, gas, renewable and chemicals technologies that can potentially benefit the parent company. SAEV generally spends several million to tens of millions of dollars on each acquisition, focusing on companies developing drilling techniques, chemical applications or blockchain-based trading.

It has backed 45 technology firms, primarily in the US and Europe, since 2012. SAEV aimed to start a new fund of about $500 million to seek out more acquisitions.