Megalith Financial, a blank check company, is set to merge with Customers Bank-backed BankMobile Technologies, an American digital banking platform, in a $140m deal. Upon closing of the transaction, the combined company will operate as BM Technologies and expects to be listed on the NYSE.
“There has been rapid growth of digital banking platforms, or neobanks, as many customers search for less burdensome access to banking services. We believe that BankMobile’s approach to collaborate with distribution partners and partner banks, positions it well to continue to grow as an increasing number of non-banks are looking to offer financial services to their existing customers. Accordingly, we believe that the opportunity to bring BankMobile to the public markets as a stand-alone company is highly attractive,” A.J. Dunklau, MFAC CEO.
Megalith Financial is advised by Ellenoff Grossman & Schole, Keefe Bruyette & Woods, Chardan and Vantage Point Advisors. Customers Bank is advised by Duane Morris, Boenning & Scattergood, Raymond James, Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough and Stradley Ronon Stevens & Young.
Court Square Capital, a private equity firm focused on leveraged buyout transactions, completed the acquisition of a stake in RailPros, a provider of rail and transit engineering and construction services, from Bow River Capital, a private alternative asset management company. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"RailPros exemplifies Court Square’s strategy of backing market leading companies with best-in-class management teams," Joseph Silvestri, Court Square Managing Partner.
RailPros was advised by Piper Sandler. Court Square Capital was advised by Houlihan Lokey and Dechert. Bow River Capital was advised by Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner.
Novacap, a Canada-based private equity firm, completed the acquisition of a stake in FortNine, an e-commerce platform for motorcycle, dirt bike, ATV, snowmobile and other power sports gear, accessories and parts. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"We found in the Sawaf brothers the same values as ours. As a rider myself, I know firsthand how great FortNine is and we are convinced that the combination of their e-commerce expertise with our focus on operational excellence will drive FortNine to its next phase of growth. We are all very excited about working with the FortNine team," Antoine Casimir, Novacap Principal.
Fortnine was advised by PJ Solomon and Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg. Novacap was advised by Gowling WLG.
Novacap-backed Noble Foods Nutrition, a nutrition and energy bar contract manufacturer, completed the acquisition of the co-packing activities of Betty Lou's, a manufacturer of energy bars, protein shakes, crackers and protein balls. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"This acquisition marks the first transaction in our investment thesis and an excellent foothold for Noble Foods in both the United States as well as the West Coast. We firmly believe that Noble Foods will become the preferred contract manufacturer in North America and we will continue to explore multiple acquisition and strategic opportunities to expand its current manufacturing capabilities and geographic reach," Antoine Casimir, Novacap Principal.
Noble Foods was advised by Fasken Martineau DuMoulin. Betty Lou's was advised by Turning Point Consulting and Perkins Coie.
Mercer Advisors, a comprehensive wealth management firm, completed the acquisition of Summit Wealth Advisors, a wealth management firm located in Frisco, Colorado. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"We look forward to Bob and Emily joining the team, adding their years of experience and community involvement to our growing presence in Colorado. From the very first conversations with Bob, Emily and the Summit team, it was clear we had a unified vision on how to serve clients and our communities," Dave Welling, Mercer Advisors CEO.
Summit Wealth Advisors was advised by FP Transitions. Mercer Advisors was advised by Chris Tofalli.
HOF Village, a multi-use sports, entertainment and media company, completed the acquisition of The Crown League, a development stage fantasy football league. Financial terms were not disclosed.
“This transaction is representative of the type of integrated businesses we are working hard and carefully to build. Our strategic plan is supported by strong long-term fundamentals across our different verticals. The offerings we are creating are being purpose-built to be mutually beneficial allowing for monetization in a variety of ways such as sponsorship and content distribution. Introducing a well-conceived fantasy football league powered by our unique partnerships within Professional Football creates a new avenue for sustainable growth in a market that is ripe for disruption,” Michael Crawford, HOFV President and CEO.
Nolato, a solutions provider of polymer products, agreed to acquire GW Plastics, a provider of plastics and silicones molding for every industry, including healthcare, automotive and filtration, for $207m.
"This acquisition provides us with significant volumes and a strong position on the key North American continent. It supports relationships with existing customers, while also creating additional opportunities for growth and expanding our customer base," Christer Wahlquist, Nolato President and CEO.
Logo Brands, a manufacturer of licensed products, agreed to acquire Boelter Brands, the sports licensed products division of The Boelter Companies, a provider of food and beverage commercial design services. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"Logo Brands is an industry leader for new, unique and innovative lifestyle products, so adding drinkware to our line-up was a logical move. We are very excited about this opportunity to be a 'one-stop-shop' for retailers and extend our brand and merchandising options for the consumer," Kris Tally, Logo Brands Vice President of Sales and Marketing.
Chevron Technology Ventures, American Electric Power, Clearvision and Quantum Energy Partners led a $127m funding round in ChargePoint, an electric vehicle charging network.
"The shift to electric drive is intensifying for mainstream businesses and fleet operators, a transition poised to be one of the most significant transformations in modern history. The additional $127m in funding provides capital to expand our investment as the market grows, underscoring investor confidence in the unprecedented potential of electric mobility as well as ChargePoint’s leadership across continents. With more than a decade of category leadership, ChargePoint is well positioned to continue the buildout of 21st century mobility infrastructure that will pave the way to the mass adoption of EVs," Pasquale Romano, ChargePoint President and CEO.
Clearwater Analytics considers a $2bn sale. (FS)
Clearwater Analytics is exploring a sale that could value the private equity-owned investment management software firm at around $2bn, including debt, Reuters reported.
Welsh, Carson, Anderson & Stowe, the buyout firm which acquired its majority stake in the business in 2016 for an undisclosed amount, hired an investment bank to run an auction for Clearwater. Clearwater currently generates around $200m of revenue annually.
Gilbert’s Rocket to raise $1.8bn in downsized IPO.
Rocket Companies, the parent of the mortgage giant founded by billionaire Dan Gilbert, priced shares below the marketed range in a shrunken IPO to raise $1.8bn. That fell far short of the $3.3bn offering the Detroit-based company had aimed for earlier, Bloomberg reported.
Rocket, which operates Quicken Loans and Rocket Mortgage, sold 100m shares for $18 each. Rocket had earlier filed to sell 150m shares at $20 to $22 each.
J.C. Penney lenders look for higher bids from potential buyers.
A group of lenders steering J.C. Penney’s bankruptcy process is asking potential buyers of the retail chain to increase their bids after a round of offers in July were seen as too low, Bloombergreported.
The lenders are pushing for offers closer to the approximately $2.2bn of J.C. Penney’s debt they hold. Earlier proposals from mall owners and retail firms added up to payments of about $1.8bn. If those don’t improve, the lenders could acquire the company through a credit bid, in which they forgive the debt in return for ownership.
True Wind plans tech SPAC. (FS)
A special-purpose acquisition company led by True Wind Capital filed for an IPO, with plans to raise $525m, Pitchbook reported.
Called TWC Tech Holdings II and based in San Francisco, the vehicle will seek to acquire a tech company valued at between $1-10bn. True Wind founding partners Adam Clammer and Jamie Greene will be the CEO and chairman of the SPAC, respectively.
Bausch Health considers a spin-off of eye-care business.
Bausch Health stock rose as much as 18% after the drugmaker said it would spin off its eye-care business, Bloomberg reported.
The Bausch + Lomb business will operate as an independent, publicly-traded company. The unit accounted for about $3.7bn in revenue last year, Bausch said in a statement, almost half of its $8.6bn total.
Gores Holdings V announces pricing of $475m IPO.
Gores Holdings V, a blank check company formed for the purpose of entering into a merger, capital stock exchange, asset acquisition, stock purchase, reorganization or similar business combination with one or more businesses, priced its IPO of 47.5m units at a price of $10 per unit.
The units were listed on the Nasdaq Capital Market and trade under the ticker symbol “GRSVU”. Each unit consists of one share of the company’s Class A common stock and one-fifth of one warrant.
NorthEdge-backed Orbis Protect, a site and people protection specialist, completed the acquisition of Optosafe, a CCTV tower provider. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"We know our markets well and are aware of the high demand for Optosafe's services. It makes monitoring and security for areas like construction, infrastructure and utilities safer and more reliable than traditional security systems, which is key for clients who own and operate these assets. Working with Orbis Protect will allow us to accelerate our ongoing R&D work to develop new services for our customers," John Robertson, Optosafe Managing Director.
Orbis Protect is advised by BDO, Better Basics, Deloitte, Fairgrove and Browne Jacobson. Debt financing is provided by Clydesdale Bank.
Uber, an American multinational ride-hailing company, agreed to acquire Autocab, a supplier of private hire taxi booking and taxi dispatch software. Financial terms were not disclosed.
"Autocab has been working with local operators across the world to provide the technology to make them more efficient and open up a marketplace to provide more trips. Working with Uber we can scale up our ambitions, providing hundreds of thousands of additional trips for our customers, and help cement the place of licenced operators in their local community," Safa Alkateb, Autocab CEO.
The Friedkin Group, a privately-held consortium of businesses, agreed to acquire an 86.5% stake in AS Roma, an Italian football club, for $700m. After the completion of the transaction The Friedkin Group will launch a tender offer for the remaining 13.4% stake.
"All of us at The Friedkin Group are so happy to have taken the steps to become a part of this iconic city and club. We look forward to closing the purchase as soon as possible and immersing ourselves in the AS Roma family," Dan Friedkin, The Friedkin Group Chairman and CEO.
Zynga, a specialist in interactive entertainment, agreed to acquire an 80% stake in Rollic, a mobile games developer and publisher, for $168m. Over the next three years, Zynga will acquire the remaining 20% in equal installments at valuations based on specific profitability goals.
"Our expertise in hyper-casual is a seamless fit for Zynga's proficiency in product management, data science, ad monetization and world-class publishing. With Rollic's robust slate of existing and new hyper-casual games joining Zynga's portfolio, we look forward to advancing our collective mission to connect the world through games," Burak Vardal, Rollic Founder and CEO.
PSA's car-sharing service seeks new investors.
Free2Move, the car rental and car-sharing business developed by French automaker PSA Group, has the capacity to start to court new outside investors.
Created as a brand in 2016, the business became a fully-fledged legal entity within the Peugeot owning-group last week. It offers a range of so-called mobility services, which include taxi rides, as well as rentals and car-sharing.
"It remains completely open. It’s one of the possibilities, but we aren’t there yet. We’re really in stage one (which consists in) profitable growth and pulling it all together," Brigitte Courtehoux, PSA Group CEO.
Transocean picks Lazard and considers strategic alternatives.
Transocean tapped Lazard to be its financial adviser as the world’s biggest owner of deepwater oil rigs confronts history’s worst crude crash, Bloombergreported.
The Swiss-based rig contractor said that firm’s hiring is in connection with an evaluation of strategic alternatives to manage its capital structure. Transocean has also made some internal reorganization moves, including the transfer of its Endurance and Equinox rigs into a newly created indirect subsidiary.
Mediaset ready to seek end to Vivendi spat after merger plan blocked.
Mediaset, Italy’s top commercial broadcaster, said it was ready to start talks with its second-largest investor Vivendi after it dropped plans for a pan-European broadcasting platform which the French group opposed, Reuters reported.
Over the last four years Mediaset, which is controlled by the family of former Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi, has been embroiled in a legal battle with the French media group which stemmed from a failed pay-TV sale.
BNP Paribas suspended new commodity trade finance deals while it reviews its involvement in the business in Europe, Middle East and Africa, Bloombergreported.
The French bank, one of the largest lenders to global commodity traders, has recently told clients that no new deals will be concluded unless there’s a contractual obligation. BNP is currently reviewing options for the future of its EMEA commodity trade finance business.
UniCredit ignores Italy M&A wave and sees opportunities in Covid-19 crisis.
UniCredit vowed to stay out of a possible merger wave in Italy, saying Covid-19 turmoil could help it win clients on its home turf without a tie-up after reporting higher than forecast quarterly results, Reuters reported.
Rival Intesa Sanpaolo is set to overtake UniCredit as Italy's biggest bank after it snapped up UBI Banca this month, in a move seen piling pressure on UniCredit boss Jean Pierre Mustier who has turned the lender around in the past four years but has failed to clinch a mooted cross-border deal.
“We should just focus on our business and benefit from the market disruption which is being brought by Covid to target clients with a very good risk profile,” Jean Pierre Mustier, UniCredit CEO.
Phoenix chief says Covid-19 will speed up insurance M&A.
The coronavirus crisis is set to speed up the pace of dealmaking in UK life insurance, according to Andy Briggs, Phoenix chief executive, as companies look to rid themselves of old businesses they no longer want.
Many insurers have large books of legacy products, consisting of long-term policies that were sold to customers years ago but no longer fit in with their plans. A number of specialists have been set up to buy these books and run them better by saving money.
"We are very optimistic about the potential outlook for further M&A in the UK. So many companies are struggling with their balance sheets, they’re struggling with their valuations, they’re struggling to pay dividends. M&A remains a core central part of our strategy,” Andy Briggs, Phoenix CEO.
Ageas, a Belgian multinational insurance company, agreed to acquire a 23% stake in IDBI Federal Life Insurance Company, one of India's growing life insurance companies, from IDBI Bank, a banking company, for $68m.
"This investment offers Ageas a unique opportunity to increase its presence in India, one of the world’s largest and fastest growing economies, and to further develop its Life business, alongside long-lasting partners, in a market with great potential. As the largest shareholder, it also allows us to play a more active role in the further development of the company," Bart De Smet, Ageas CEO.
Ageas is advised by Rothschild & Co.
Warburg-backed ESR’s JV acquired Tokyo logistics facility for $368m. (FS, RE)
ESR Cayman, a Warburg Pincus-backed logistics real estate firm, announced its acquisition of a logistics facility in Tokyo for $368m through its joint venture with AXA Investment Managers – Real Assets, DealStreetAsia reported.
ESR said the joint venture completed the acquisition of ESR Kuki Distribution Centre from Redwood Japan Logistics Fund II, the firm’s Japan-focused logistics development fund, and co-investors.
"This highly successful transaction demonstrates the attractiveness and resilience of the logistics asset class against the backdrop of a challenging macroeconomic environment, reassuring our strong conviction in the APAC logistics sector," Jeffrey Shen and Stuart Gibson, ESR Co-founders and Co-CEOs.
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