Special Purpose Acquisition Company (SPAC) Transactions in the Fintech Sector
By Jonathan Cardenas
Public listings through reverse mergers with special purpose acquisition companies (SPACs), commonly referred to as “backdoor listings,” have returned to the capital markets spotlight and are being utilized at record-breaking levels as an expedited alternative to traditional initial public offerings (IPOs). Often referred to as “blank check companies,” SPACs are publicly traded shell corporations that raise capital through an IPO of the SPAC (a SPAC IPO) in order to subsequently acquire and take public a separate privately held target company in what is commonly referred to as either a SPAC merger, a “De-SPAC” transaction or an initial business combination transaction (a SPAC IBC). The volume of SPAC IPOs and related SPAC IBCs (collectively, SPAC transactions) skyrocketed in 2020 as a result of COVID-19 pandemic-related financial market uncertainty, as well as sponsor, investor and target company appetite for liquidity and exit opportunities. Technology is considered to be the dominant sector for SPAC transactions, and an increasing number of SPACs are being formed to combine specifically with target companies in the financial services technology (Fintech) sector. This article provides a brief overview of the rise of SPAC transactions in the Fintech sector in 2020.
This article originally appeared in American Business Law Today.