The first quarter of 2021 was the busiest ever for special purpose acquisition companies and brought with it some new wrinkles in the white-hot market.
According to PrivateRaise, The Deal’s proprietary data service tracking U.S. SPACs, 296 vehicles went public raising a collective $87 billion. The total surpasses the previous record set in the fourth quarter of 2020, when 136 SPACs went public. The first-quarter total also eclipsed the IPO total for all of 2020 of 235.
All told, there are 552 SPACs that are public and have not yet consummated a business combination, although there are 122 transactions pending, according to PrivateRaise.
While there are 430 public SPACs searching for partners, there are also 256 SPACs that have not yet priced an IPO. In total, as of April 2, there were 686 SPACs in the deal universe.
The largest SPAC IPO, Soaring Eagle Acquisition Corp. (SRNGU) at $1.7 billion, belonged to serial sponsor Eagle Equity Partners LLC. The Los Angeles-based SPAC platform has produced nine SPACs and eight business combinations.
There were 94 SPAC business combinations announced or closed in the first quarter carrying a value of about $227 billion. For comparison, in all of 2020, there were 98 de-SPACs worth a total of $157 billion.
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