Artisan Acquisition raises US$300m in US

Friday, May 14, 2021

Special purpose acquisition company, Artisan Acquisition, backed by New World Development's (0017) Adrian Cheng raised US$300 million (HK$2.34 billion) in the US market today.

The amount raised from the initial public offering will be US$345 million, assuming full exercise of the overallotment option, said UBS as the lead joint bookrunner of the deal.

Vice chairman and head of Greater China at UBS Global Banking John Lee, said the books were covered within two hours of launch despite a particularly volatile market backdrop, with strong demand from institutional investors and global family offices across Asia, Middle East and Africa, and the US.

“The deal represents the first Asian into US SPAC IPO since the SEC statements regarding the accounting treatment of warrants and the liability risk in April, re-opening the SPAC IPO markets,” said Lee.

The SPAC has signed a total of US$60m forward purchase agreements with two reputable institutional investors, Aspex and PAG. The blank check company will target global healthcare, technology and consumer companies.

SPACs are shell companies with no operating business and that raise money with the purpose of merging with an operating company to take public.

As of May 12, a total of 315 SPACs were newly listed in the US this year, which is more than the 248 SPACs listed in the whole year of last year.