Markforged to Go Public in $2.1 Billion Blank-Check Deal
(Bloomberg) -- 3D printer-maker Markforged Inc. has agreed to go public through a merger with a blank-check company started by Eventbrite Inc. co-founder Kevin Hartz.
The deal with Hartz’s special purpose acquisition company, One, values the combined equity at $2.1 billion, the companies said in a statement.
Kevin Hartz’s, One’s chief executive officer, said in an interview that his SPAC looked at 200 companies before choosing Markforged.
To support the transaction, the SPAC will raise $210 million from investors including Baron Capital Group, BlackRock Inc., Miller Value Partners, Wasatch Global Investors and Wellington Management. Microsoft Corp.’s Venture Fund and Porsche Automobil Holding SE will also participate in the private investment in public equity, or PIPE.
One of Markforged’s rivals, Desktop Metal Inc., went public in December through a merger with another SPAC, Trine Acquisition Corp.
Markforged, based in Watertown, Massachusetts, was founded in 2013 and has raised $137 million to date, according to the statement. Some of its customers include Tesla Inc., Microsoft and Amazon.com Inc., its website shows.
Shai Terem, Markforged’s chief executive officer, said that the company’s main products are 3D printers and related devices that cost from $5,000 to $180,000.
Markforged’s also sells industrial-grade materials and software that let customers print 3D parts out of metal or composite materials, which are stronger than aluminum and can replace steel, he added.
“We’re on a journey in manufacturing and have 10,000 customers and we think we can have 100,000 in the next few years,” Terem said.
More SPACs Ahead
The SPAC, One, went public in August after raising $215 million, including the so-called greenshoe overalottment, at $10 a unit. Its units were trading Wednesday at $14.42 at 2:59 p.m. in New York.
This might not be the last SPAC deal from Hartz, who started a firm call A* (pronounced “A-star”) to sponsor blank-check companies.
“Our SPAC is titled One and that implies a two, three and four. We really look up to the Sequoia Capitals of the world where they have a fund one, fund two, fund three,” Hartz said.
Citigroup Inc. and William Blair advised Markforged on the transaction, while Goldman Sachs Group Inc. advised One.
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