Equinox’s Merger Talks With Palihapitiya-Backed SPAC Have Ended


Equinox Holdings, the luxury gym operator popular among celebrities and financiers, is no longer in talks to go public through a merger with a blank-check company backed by investor Chamath Palihapitiya, according to people with knowledge of the matter.

Negotiations between Social Capital Hedosophia Holdings Corp. VI and Equinox, which also operates SoulCycle indoor-cycling centers, fell apart due to a disagreement over the combined company’s valuation, one of the people said. Bloomberg News in May reported the two parties were in discussions regarding a transaction that may have valued the merged entity at more than $7.5 billion.

Representatives for Equinox and Social Capital Hedosophia declined to comment.

Equinox, forced to shutter many locations due to the pandemic, reported a loss of around $350 million on about $650 million in revenue last year and had drawn interest from SPACs. Founded in 1991, it expanded into hospitality, and operates a hotel in Manhattan’s Hudson Yards neighborhood.

Led by executive Chairman Harvey Spevak, Equinox struck a funding deal with private equity firm Silver Lake last year to build out its Equinox+ digital platform. This month, it combined its Equinox+ and Equinox apps, giving members access to at-home content from SoulCycle, Rumble, Solidcore, Pure Yoga and other providers.

The company has said that pre-pandemic, in 2019, 60% of its members used a fitness app to supplement their workouts at its clubs.

Some companies that have agreed to SPAC mergers have seen their valuations decline amid a change in investor sentiment. Momentus Inc. and Stable Road Acquisition Corp. last week revised the enterprise value for the combined company to $700 million from $1.2 billion under their original merger agreement.

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