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2021 SPAC Market Update and Opportunities for Asia Pacific

The special purpose acquisition company (SPAC) market has boomed over the past several years, with continued increases in IPO activity and record completions of de-SPAC transactions. More than 50% of total IPOs in 2020 were SPACs, this represents a 4x increase from the previous year. As of March 25, 2021, 445 SPACs have filed with the SEC with 296 SPACs pricing, raising over $89 billion*. This surpasses 2020's record number of 248 SPACs raising over $76 billion* for the full year of 2020. Over 445 SPACs are looking for their target globally with an additional 225+ pending pricing and expected to complete in Q2, this means over 670 SPACs are knocking on the doors of private companies or public companies looking to carve-out a business unit.

The popularity of SPACs can be attributed to factors such as highly regarded sponsor teams, their unique investment structure, and the well-established complementary private investment in the public equity (PIPE) financing market. As investors seek opportunities to earn outsized returns in a low-interest rate, low-yield environment, companies are also eager to partner with world-class sponsor teams and exert more control over valuation and share price, and to mitigate some of the market volatility risks. At the same time, the push to de-SPAC is continuing in 2021 as SPACs must complete their de-SPAC transaction within the two-year post-IPO deadline. SPAC sponsors are reportedly ‘competing’ to attract target businesses in Asia for de-SPAC opportunities. 

In this rapidly-evolving landscape, how should SPAC sponsors and Asia Pacific companies prepare? What are the associated risks stakeholders must not overlook when choosing the SPAC route vs. a traditional IPO? Donnelley Financial Solutions (DFIN) proudly organized its first APAC focused SPAC webinar on April 15, 2021, bringing together capital markets leaders from NYSE, J.P. Morgan, Latham & Watkins and PwC to discuss these topics:

  • The SPACs market landscape – challenges and opportunities facing sponsors and target firms as 2021 unfolds
  • Pros and cons of the SPAC route vs. traditional US IPO
  • Readiness for the de-SPAC opportunity: what are the risks businesses must not overlook when choosing the SPAC route? 
  • Southeast Asia spotlight: a surge in SPAC activities and implications to stakeholders
  • Factors leading to a successful merger into a SPAC. From accelerated filing & post-SPAC compliance, PIPE financing to accounting & controls standards.

*excludes over-allotments

Speakers:

Gregor Feige – Co-Head of Asia (Ex-Japan) ECM, J.P. Morgan
Sharon Lau – Partner & Global Corporate Department Vice Chair, Latham & Watkins
Jennie Dong – Head of SPACs, NYSE
Delano Musafer – Head of Asia-Pacific Capital Markets, NYSE
Jasmin Maranan – Partner, Capital Markets, PwC

Moderated by:

Bridget Hughes – VP, Corporate Governance & Compliance Services, GCM, DFIN

Duration: 1 hour
Date of recording: April 15, 2021
Language: English