Three Houston-area blank check companies have filed to go public in the last few days. This is part of a record year for such companies. According to the Wall Street Journal, blank check companies have raised $41 billion so far this year, compared to $14 billion last year.
Landcadia Holdings III
Landcadia Holdings III filed to go public. This is the third blank check company launched by Tilman Fertitta, CEO of Landry’s and Richard Handler, the CEO of Jefferies. They plan to raise $500 million. As before, the company plans to acquire a business in the consumer, dining, hospitality or entertainment sectors.
Landcadia Holdings went public in 2016 and acquired Waitr Holdings, an online food ordering and delivery service, in 2018 for $308 million. The business has had a rough ride since (3 CEO’s and 3 CFO’s), though the pandemic has been good for the business.
Landcadia Holdings II went public in May 2019. It is in the process of buying the Golden Nugget Online Gaming business from Landry’s.
Genesis Park Acquisition
Genesis Park Acquisition Corp has filed for a $200 million IPO. The company is led by chairman David Siegel, who is also Executive Chairman of an ultra-low-cost airline carrier, Sun Country Airlines. Together with CEO Paul Hobby (the Founding Partner of PE firm Genesis Park LP), they are seeking a business in the aviation sector with an enterprise value of between $500 million and $1 billion. The CFO is Jonathan Baliff, former CFO and CEO at Bristow.
Delwinds Insurance Acquisition has also filed for a $200 million IPO. It is a blank check company formed by The Gray Insurance Company. CEO Andrew Poole is an investment consultant at Gray while CFO Bryce Quin, is a process improvement specialist at Gray. They previously led a blank check company called Tiberius that went public in 2018. It subsequently acquired International General Insurance earlier this year.
Delwinds plans to target businesses in the insurance technology sector or brokers or carriers that use insurance technology (i.e using data analytics or artificial intelligence to better price risk or automate back offices procedures).
Recently gone public
Peridot Acquisition Corp became the latest Houston-area blank check company to go public when it raised $300 million, effective September 23, 2020. The business was formed by Carnelian Energy Capital and is seeking a business with a positive environmental impact.
Industrial Tech Acquisitions raised $75 million in early September. It is searching for industrial and energy technology businesses with an enterprise value of between $250 million and $500 million.
Graf Industrial, which went public in October 2018, is in the process of acquiring Velodyne Lidar, based in San Jose.