Thursday, April 15, 2021

Spac, backed by Bill Foley, nears $ 9 billion deal to buy Paysafe

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Blackstone and CVC have agreed to list Paysafe at a valuation of $ 9 billion through a merger with a blank check company started by billionaire Bill Foley.

The deal triples the investment of private equity firms three years after the takeover of the UK fintech group, people briefed on the deal said.

Foley Trasimene Acquisition II, the special purpose acquisition company which listed in August The New York Stock Exchange, raising $ 1.47 billion, plans to announce a deal as early as Monday, people briefed on the transaction said.

Mr. Foley’s investment vehicle will also help raise nearly $ 2 billion in additional funds from institutional investors, making Paysafe’s return to the public market one of the largest blank check transactions in the world. ‘year.

The latest deal involving Spacs, which is raising liquidity in the stock market and looking to buy a private company to go public, highlights how Wall Street’s hottest financial structure is being used for bigger and bigger deals.

With a valuation of $ 9 billion, including debt and additional investments, the Paysafe deal would be right behind the Churchill Capital III merger with MultiPlan for $ 11 billion. This week, Dyal Capital said it was in speak to merge with Owl Rock Capital and go public via a blank check vehicle in a deal that would value the two asset managers at a combined $ 13 billion.

The acquisition of the Isle of Man-based digital payments specialist is the latest in a wave of industry deals that has seen several private equity players profit generously of their wagering on exponentially growing online transactions.

Nexi payment group, listed in Milan recently acquired for 7.8 billion euros, Danish rival Nets, a group controlled by buyout groups Advent, Bain Capital and Hellman & Friedman. The Italian company also recently finalized a merger of 15 billion euros with its national rival Sia. Earlier this year, the French payment services group Worldline caught a local rival Ingenico for 7.8 billion euros.

Paysafe, which has dominated online gambling transactions and helped retailers process customer online payments, was acquired by Blackstone and CVC for £ 3 billion in 2017. As part of the deal with Mr Foley’s Spac, the private equity duo would retain a stake in Paysafe, people briefed on the matter said.

Mr Foley’s move comes as private and public online payment companies have experienced a boom over the past year, as forced coronavirus lockdowns have prompted millions around the world to buy more goods and of Internet services.

For the billionaire investor, this is the latest in a series of Spac deals in the financial services industry. In 2018 he started a blank check company with the former Blackstone trader Chinh Chu to acquire life insurer Fidelity & Guaranty Life for $ 1.8 billion.

Blackstone and CVC declined to comment.

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