Crypto Platform Bakkt to Go Public Through Blank-Check Merger
(Bloomberg) -- Bakkt Holdings LLC, the cryptocurrency platform majority-owned by Intercontinental Exchange Inc., plans to go public through a merger with blank-check firm VPC Impact Acquisition Holdings.
The deal values Bakkt at approximately $2.1 billion, according to a statement Monday. Gavin Michael, the former head of technology for Citigroup Inc.’s global consumer bank, will join Bakkt as its chief executive officer. The merger plans were first reported by Bloomberg last week.
Bakkt, founded in 2018, is planning a widespread rollout of a mobile app in March that would allow consumers to use the $1.2 trillion held in cryptocurrencies, loyalty points and gift cards at more stores. In exchange, merchants are promised a lower cost for payment acceptance.
“The average consumer holds a wealth of digital assets but rarely tracks their value and lacks the tools to manage and utilize them,” Michael said in the statement, noting Bakkt’s aim is to “unlock trillions of dollars currently held in customer and loyalty accounts and allow consumers to put them to work.”
VPC, a special purpose acquisition company affiliated with Victory Park Capital, raised about $200 million in an initial public offering in September. The vehicle has said its strategy is to identify and help grow a business in the financial-technology sector.
The combination is expected to close in the second quarter. PJ Solomon served as financial adviser to Bakkt, while Jefferies Financial Group Inc. and Citigroup advised VPC.
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