Serial Dealmaker Bill Foley Looks for Carveouts With New SPAC

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Bill Foley, one of the highest-profile names in blank-check dealmaking, is on the lookout for public company assets that it could take public as a separate business.

One of Foley’s two newest special purpose acquisition companies, which raised $2.07 billion combined last week, is reaching beyond his typical scope for transactions. Instead of focusing solely on technology or fintech businesses, the SPAC will also look at carveouts from publicly traded consumer companies such as Revlon Inc., he said in an interview on Monday.

“We are going to start looking at large public companies that have divisions to dispose,” Foley said in an interview. “I’m intrigued by the carveout idea.”

Equipped with capital and time-strapped for a deal, blank-check companies raising record amounts of cash could increasingly see corporate spinouts as a hunting ground. Last month, publicly traded Irish packing company Ardagh Group SA sold its beverage-can business to a blank-check company backed by financier Alec Gores.

These transactions benefit corporates that want to monetize assets while retaining a controlling stake, experts have said.

The filing by Foley’s new SPAC reflects his expanded scope.

“We may also pursue a target outside of the financial technology or information services sector should we find an attractive business that fits within Mr. Foley’s historical areas of business expertise,” according to the listing document filed by Austerlitz Acquisition Corp. I.

“Mr. Foley has extensive industry experience in real estate, insurance, alcoholic consumer beverages including wine and spirits, sports and business-to-business business services.”

Foley’s SPAC deals have included an agreement in January for a merger with Alight Solutions LLC for $7.3 billion including debt. In December, another blank-check firm of his reached a $9 billion deal to take Paysafe Group Ltd.

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