Beacon Street to go public via $3 billion SPAC merger

(Reuters) – Beacon Street Group will go public through a merger with blank-check firm Ascendant Digital Acquisition Corp, in a deal that pegs the financial research subscriptions service’s pro-forma enterprise value at $3 billion.

The cash portion of the deal, announced on Tuesday, will be financed by the $414 million raised in an initial public offering by the blank-check firm last year and $150 million from private investors.

Beacon Street offers more than 160 products used for financial research, education and investment. The service is available on platforms including mobiles, desktops and tablets.

The transaction with the special purpose acquisition company (SPAC) is expected to be completed in the second quarter.

A SPAC is a shell company that uses IPO proceeds to buy another company, typically within two years, in a merger that will take the acquired company public. Investors are not notified in advance on what company the SPAC will buy.

SPACs have emerged as a popular IPO alternative for companies this year, providing a path to going public with less regulatory scrutiny.

Oppenheimer & Co Inc and Odeon Capital are financial advisers to Beacon Street, while UBS Investment Bank was the sole financial and capital markets adviser to Ascendant.

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