Ackman Says SPAC Will Miss First-Quarter Target for Deal


Bill Ackman’s blank-check company will miss self-imposed goal to find a target, but the activist investor is already eyeing a second SPAC once a deal is done.

The billionaire, who had said he hoped to find a target by the end of the first quarter for Pershing Square Tontine Holdings Ltd., acknowledged time was running out.

“While we previously believed that we would be able to announce a potential transaction by the end of this quarter, we will not be in a position to do so,” Ackman said in a letter to investors Monday. “We do not intend to make any announcements about PSTH’s transaction progress until we enter into a definitive agreement.”

Ackman Says SPAC Will Miss First-Quarter Target for Deal

In July, Pershing Square Tontine raised $4 billion in an initial public offering, plus a $1 billion commitment from Pershing Square Capital Management, and is now seeking a private company to take public. Ackman had held talks with Airbnb Inc., Stripe Inc. and others.

Ackman said he believed that Pershing Square Tontine will be an important contributor to his hedge fund’s performance, and that he is already planning a second SPAC -- or special purpose acquisition company -- once a transaction for the first one is found.

Investors in the first SPAC, including his Pershing Square, should have the right to invest in the second one “without paying a premium to its c ash-in-trust value,” he wrote.

“We have always believed in giving existing investors the right to participate in new Pershing Square opportunities, and we intend to continue this tradition with PSTH,” he said, using Pershing Square Tontine’s stock symbol.

Shares in Pershing Square Tontine fell 2.5% to $23.82 in New York on Monday.

Ackman has until July 21, 2022, to sign a letter of intent, and six months after that to close the deal if one is signed by then, according to a regulatory filing.

Pershing Square also said Monday it was nominating three new directors for election at this year’s annual general meeting. The nominees are: Tope Lawani, Rupert Morley and Tracy Palandjian.

Pershing Square is coming off a record year despite the volatility created by the outbreak of the coronavirus. Ackman’s hedge fund returned 70.2%. on its investments in 2020, aided by a credit hedge put in place prior to the market collapse that returned roughly $2.6 billion. Pershing Square has returned 5.9% this year through March 23, according to its website.

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