Startup IPO Trends via Blank Check Companies, Akulaku to Traveloka
The startup’s IPO is expected to be marked by a merger with a special purpose acquisition company or SPAC this year. There are at least four that are exploring the initial public offering using a blank check company, one of which is Akulaku.
Furthermore, the funds are used to finance merger or acquisition opportunities within the specified timeframe. However, the target companies being merged or acquired are usually not identified.
So, SPAC’s IPO is used to finalize future deals with certain companies. Corporations that are acquired or merged automatically become public companies, without going through a lengthy process.
The startup that was recently reported to be planning an IPO through a merger with SPAC is Akulaku. “The combined entity is said to be around US$ 2 billion,” said several Bloomberg sources familiar with the matter, quoted last weekend (14/1).
There are at least four startup companies that are rumored to be or are already planning to go public on the stock exchange through a merger with SPAC. The four are: 1. Akulaku Bloomberg reports that this startup is attracting advisors in search of potential deals.
The financial technology (fintech) company is also reportedly in preliminary talks with SPAC Catcha Investment Corp, founded by internet entrepreneur Patrick Grove.
“A merger with a blank check company could take place as soon as this year,” said several sources. The fintech lending is also reportedly seeking funding of US$ 200 million to US$ 300 million.
“Discussions are still early and could fail. The company may decide to explore a combination with a different SPAC,” said the source.
Kredivo This fintech lending startup plans to have an IPO on the US exchange, Nasdaq this year. The IPO plan will be executed after Kredivo’s parent company, namely FinaAccel, is acquired by a US global investment company, VPC Impact Acquisition Holdings II (VPCB).
Last year, they announced that it had entered the stage of a definitive agreement for the merger of VPCB’s business as a special purpose acquisition company.
“It’s a great opportunity to meet various credit needs such as cash loans, and realize our vision of driving fast, affordable and easily accessible credit access to millions of consumers,” said Akshay Garg, FinAccel Co-Founder and CEO in a statement, last year (3/8/2021).
Tiket.com and Traveloka
Tiket.com CEO George Hendrata said the company would be getting closer to an IPO this year. There are also many startups in the digital-based travel service sector that have benefited from being listed on the exchange.
“Then we will follow the same path,” he said in a special interview with Kr-Asia reporter Simone Martin, last year (29/10/2021). George also mentioned that 2022 will be a busy year for the company.
Tiket.com also plans to IPO through SPAC, namely COVA Acquisition Corp. The combined entity of the two has the potential to generate a valuation of US$ 2 billion.
Traveloka initially planned to IPO through SPAC. It’s rumored to be merging with a Hong Kong-based SPAC company, Bridgetown Holdings Ltd. If the merger happens, the combined entity of the two is predicted to be US$ 5 billion or Rp. 73 trillion.
However, a Bloomberg source reported, Traveloka’s board of directors decided not to proceed with the IPO through SPAC. The reason is because the enthusiasm in the SPAC market is waning.
Co-Founder and Managing Partner of Gayo Capital Edward Ismawan Chamdani said unicorn IPOs would still be in demand next year. “Private investors will look at IPOs because growth is no longer the same as before or in the early stages of startups,” he said, last month (31/12/2021).
He also assessed that SPAC is still one of the schemes considered by startups for an IPO. “It’s still an option,” he said. However, the success rate of SPAC abroad is not necessarily a guarantee. In fact, it may not meet expectations.