Circle and Footprint’s aborted debuts are the final nail in SPAC’s coffin ExamPaper

It would be nice to say we will miss SPACs. But with blank check companies disappearing from our sight, we have to say we really won’t.

Many companies that went public through a SPAC or special purpose acquisition company have seen their valuations implode after the combination. The resulting public market mess meant mainstream investors, not just the more sophisticated professional investment cohort, took a bath.

In fact, it seems that the best startups out there that might be candidates for a traditional public offering didn’t go the SPAC route while it was open – we can deduce this from the ever-rising number of as-yet non-private unicorns – while some less prepared companies drove the wave right into a wall. This meant that the average quality of a company going out through a blank check combination was lower than we might have hoped.

The EV SPAC boom? A mess. Fintech SPAC? A mess. So on and so on.


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This week we saw the Circle SPAC deal die on the vine (ExamPaper kind of liked the pitch at first; it seemed the stablecoin-focused company was actually a good fit for a blank check combination). The Footprint deal also fell apart before it could be completed. Bloomberg noted this week that in addition to the 11-digit SPAC deals that fell to pieces yesterday, nearly five dozen SPAC deals have been killed this year. (Surf Air called off its deal a few weeks ago, and the list goes on.)

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