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Capital Markets

Where will it end? Now Spacs might start buying listed companies

The latest move by an asset class that just can’t keep out of the news is less surprising than it might appear.

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Shopping list: Spacs are starting to target listed companies, not just private ones
| Photo: Csaba Nagy via Pixabay

Special purpose acquisition companies (Spacs) are set to add a new technique to their toolkit, with lawyers at White & Case telling Euromoney that they are working on deals that could see US-listed Spacs buy European-listed companies, which would then transfer their listings to the US.

Such deals would mark a break from the traditional approach of Spacs, which is to buy privately held companies that are looking for an alternative route to the public markets instead of a traditional initial public offering (IPO).

On the face of it, it seems surprising that Spacs would be considering such moves, given that historically the very point of what are also called “blank cheque” companies has been to provide a listing vehicle to a company that does not already have one.

But there would be at least two compelling reasons behind the move.

First, an increasing number of US-listed Spacs have been formed with a specific mandate to look for European targets.

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