The latest investment vehicle trend continues to dominate the dealmaking landscape, and these are the SPACs created on both sides of the pond. Charles Wheeldon reports

Two special-purpose acquisition companies (SPACs) are on the hunt for food businesses – one in Amsterdam and another in St Louis (US) – as the latest investment vehicle trend continues to dominate the dealmaking landscape.

A SPAC is an investment company specialised in raising capital on the stock market with the aim of making acquisitions within 12 to 24 months. These innovative vehicles adopt the investment and management mechanisms of private equity funds, while offering investors the guarantees provided by the stock exchange: transparency, information and regulation.

2MX Organic has listed as a SPAC on the Euronext stock exchange with the aim of building a new major European player in the sustainable consumer goods sector.

Founded by Xavier Niel, Matthieu Pigasse and Moez-Alexandre Zouari, 2MX Organic has been listed through the admission to trading and direct listing of 30 million preference shares and 30 million stock warrants. The placement was issued to qualified investors for €10 per unit, and the total amount raised was €300 million.

The founders stated that their ambition is to enable European consumers to consume better, at an affordable price, in sufficient quantities and in complete safety.

2MX Organic aims to acquire one or more companies operating in Europe with strong social and environmental responsibility, mainly involved in the production and distribution of consumer goods.

Its founder and chief executive Zouari said: “We want to invent the distribution model of tomorrow starting from scratch, putting the consumer at the centre and building an alternative model. With 2MX Organic, we want to create the Tesla of responsible consumption: a benchmark player that transforms the market and becomes a champion of sustainable consumption.”

Niel added: “Lifestyles and consumption patterns are changing under the impact of three crises: economic, energy and health. In the face of this situation, with 2MX Organic we want to promote the transition to a new world where Europeans can consume better, at an affordable price, in sufficient quantities and in complete safety.”

Pigasse highlighted that 2MX Organic is the largest IPO in Paris’ Euronext in 2020. “We are very proud and honoured by the interest it has generated. Thanks to the support of our investors, we will be able to make an initial acquisition of between €1.5 and just over €2 billion. Others will follow, with the common ambition to better meet the expectations of European consumers.”

Post eyes SPAC merger

Meanwhile, in the US, St Louis-based Post Holdings, a consumer packaged goods holding company, has announced that one of its subsidiaries, Post Holdings Partnering Corporation (PHPC) – a newly formed SPAC – has filed a registration statement on Form S-1 with the Securities and Exchange Commission in connection with a proposed initial public offering.

PHPC stated it intends to partner with an unnamed company in the consumer products industry that complements the experience and expertise of Post’s management team and is a business to which Post’s management believes it can add value.

The SPAC intends to raise $400 million in the proposed offering through the sale of units consisting of common stock and warrants to purchase common stock. PHPC also expects to grant the underwriters an option to purchase up to an additional 15% of the units in the proposed offering.

PHPC will be managed by Post’s management team: Robert V Vitale, Post’s president and chief executive, will be chief investment officer of PHPC; Bradly A Harper, Post’s chief accounting officer, will be chief financial officer; and Jeff Zadoks, Post’s chief financial officer, will be chairman.

Evercore Group and Barclays Capital are acting as the lead bookrunning managers for the proposed offering.

2MX Organic and PHPC join Natural Order Acquisition Corp, the SPAC created last year co-founded by veteran vegan investor Sebastiano Cossia Castiglioni. Natural Order formed in August targeting plant-based food brands and alternative protein businesses.

Date published: 11 March 2021

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