The Bruneian

Singapore hosts third SPAC listing; Novo Tellusback­ed firm makes debut


Southeast Asian industrial technology buyout fund Novo Tellus Capital Partners listed its special purpose acquisitio­n company (SPAC) in Singapore on Thursday, marking the third such IPO this month as the city-state seeks to become a hub for SPAC listings.

The trio of SPAC listings in Singapore comes almost a year after a frenzy of debuts of blank-cheque firms in the United States, which was stalled when regulatory changes and poor returns affected investor sentiment.

Novo Tellus Alpha Acquisitio­n, which raised S$150 million ($111 million), traded at S$4.96 versus its initial public offering (IPO) price of S$5 per unit. Each unit comprises one Class A share and one half of a warrant exercisabl­e at S$5.75 per share.

SPACs, or shell firms, raise money on stock markets to buy private companies, effectivel­y bringing those businesses to markets in shorter time frames and often stronger valuations.

At a listing ceremony on Thursday, Novo Tellus Alpha Acquisitio­n Chief Executive Loke Wai San said structural change in supply chain trends would benefit industrial and technology companies in the region. He also said Singapore was a key venue to list SPACs.

“We would be looking at companies in the S$500 million to S$1 billion range,” Loke, also the CEO of Novo Tellus, told Reuters last week.

He said investors had “expectatio­ns of stable growth, profitabil­ity and not hyper growth and huge losses” for the SPAC’s target group of industrial companies.

Earlier this month, Vertex Technology Acquisitio­n Corp Ltd, sponsored by a unit of Singapore state investor Temasek Holdings, raised S$200 million in the city.

Next to list was a S$170 million SPAC backed by European asset manager Tikehau Capital and a holding firm of LVMH CEO Bernard Arnault.

Hong Kong is also allowing SPAC listings from this year but bars participat­ion from retail investors.

Novo Tellus’ SPAC IPO was heavily oversubscr­ibed. Sponsored by Novo Tellus PE Fund 2, the IPO secured 13 cornerston­e investors, including Malaysia’s Affin Hwang Asset Management Bhd and an indirect, fully owned subsidiary of Temasek.

Credit Suisse and DBS were the joint issuer managers and joint global co-ordinator of the IPO.

 ?? ?? Image: Shuttersto­ck
Image: Shuttersto­ck

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