Alex Rodriguez Files to Raise $500 Million in Slam Corp. SPAC
(Bloomberg) -- Former New York Yankees star Alex Rodriguez joined the roster of wealthy celebrities backing blank-check companies with a filing to raise $500 million for Slam Corp.
Rodriquez is the chief executive officer of Slam, which intends to pursue businesses in the sports, media, entertainment, health and wellness and consumer technology sectors, according to its filing Thursday with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. Slam specified, though, that it doesn’t intend to target professional sports franchises.
Slam Chairman Himanshu Gulati is the founder and managing partner of Antara Capital, which is backed by Blackstone Group Inc. Marc Lore, who led Walmart Inc.’s e-commerce business, will serve as a special adviser to Slam, according to the filing.
Private equity giant KKR Inc. also filed Thursday to raise $1 billion its new SPAC, KKR Acquisition Holdings I Corp.
Once an obscure investment vehicle, SPACs rocketed to new heights last year, raising $83 billion and accounting for about 46% of the sums raised in initial public offerings on U.S. exchanges, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. This year, most of the $53 billion raised in IPOs was by blank-check companies, which are on pace for another record year.
Rodriguez and KKR join a cadre of high-profile investors who have turned to SPACs. They include billionaire investors Bill Ackman, ex-Boeing Co. CEO Dennis Muilenburg and Billy Beane, the Major League Baseball executive featured in the book and movie “Moneyball.”
Former U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross filed this week to raise $300 million in a SPAC that includes Larry Kudlow, the former CNBC contributor who was assistant to the president and director of the National Economic Council under President Donald Trump. The board of Ross Acquisition Corp. II also includes Lord William Astor, who was a minister in the Conservative governments of both Margaret Thatcher and John Major.
Two other Trump administration advisers, former Arconic Inc. CEO Klaus Kleinfeld, and former Goldman Sachs Group Inc. President Gary Cohn are also involved in SPACs.
A-Rod, as Rodriguez was known from a Major League Baseball career that spanned more than two decades, retired after the 2016 season with a lifetime batting average of .295. He started A-Rod Corp. in 2003 and has since expanded his business dealings beyond real estate.
Each unit of Slam, a special purpose acquisition company, or SPAC, will consists of one Class A ordinary share and one-fourth of a redeemable warrant.
The offering will be handled by Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and BTIG LLC. The units are expected to trade on the Nasdaq Capital Market under the symbol SLAMU.
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