Silver Lake wants to make travel deals happen
The coronavirus has left many travel and retail deals out to dry. Now Silver Lake is trying to save one while making yet another bet on travel’s comeback.
The tech-focused private equity firm, which has made high-profile bets in Airbnb and Expedia in recent months, is pushing for a deal to take public Global Blue, a company that provides tax refunds to tourists.
In January, Far Point Acquisition announced plans to acquire Global Blue for $2.6 billion and take it public. But it reversed course earlier this month as the pandemic raged on, saying management believed the combined company would lack sufficient liquidity. Global Blue, though, was undeterred, saying it would continue to pursue the combination that had attracted a $1 billion investment from Alibaba founder Jack Ma.
Silver Lake is flying straight into the turmoil. The private equity giant is urging for a merger with some concessions to sweeten the deal for Far Point’s shareholders after taking a 12% stake in the blank check company for about $100 million, Silver Lake revealed in a Wednesday filing. Silver Lake is now the blank-check company’s largest shareholder outside of hedge fund Third Point.
“COVID-19 is having more of a short-term impact on GB’s industries than prior downturns,” read Silver Lake’s letter to Far Point’s board of directors.
As part of its plan to convince Far Point shareholders of the deal, Silver Lake has offered to forgo its $168 million in cash dividends in favor of common stock, a move that reduces the transaction costs of the deal. It also offered to boost the value of warrants following the deal’s close.
Will Global Blue get its wish? Silver Lake’s deal will need to be sweet enough that another 13.1% of Far Point shareholders think the acquisition is worth it. A combination requires 50.1% of shareholders to agree—and so far, with Silver Lake and Third Point’s support, the deal has about 37% support.
Buy the shovel: Card issuing startup Marqeta more than doubled its valuation to $4.3 billion after raising $150 million from a U.S.-based institutional investor, the company said Thursday.
The raise is an extension to its Series E raise of $260 million led by Coatue Management a year earlier, meaning the terms of the deal are the same aside from the valuation bump, CEO Jason Gardner tells Term Sheet. Gardner declined to name the investor in Marqeta’s most recent round.
The startup—which helps the likes of DoorDash, Uber, Square, and Brex build out their own card offerings—has benefited from the boom in companies of all stripes diving into financial services. And while the coronavirus has hurt its revenues from sources like corporate spending and travel (a vertical in which fintech darling Brex operates), food delivery and buy-now-pay-later demand (think Klarna, another Marqeta client) has helped push the company to record volumes in March, April, and May, Gardner says. The company plans to expand further, and internationally, with the fresh funding.
For many investors, Marqeta was among the candidates for an IPO in 2020. An employee asked as much about the timing of a potential public offering of the nearly 10-year-old company in an all-hands on Wednesday. Gardner was coy and declined to give a timeline.
“The IPO window is closed and this year was going to be the year of the IPO,” he says, adding that Marqeta was not previously planning to go public in 2020.
- Pie Insurance, a Washington D.C.-based insurtech focused on worker’s compensation, raised $127 million in funding. The deal includes $27 million in extended Series B as well as $100 million for Pie Carrier Holdings, a joint venture with Gallatin Point Capital.
- Synack, a Redwood City, Calif.-based security testing platform, raised $52 million in Series D funding. B Capital Group and C5 Capital co-led the round and were joined by investors including GGV Capital, GV, Hewlett Packard Enterprise, Icon Ventures, Intel Capital, Kleiner Perkins, M12 and Singtel Innov8. Read more.
- Ascus Biosciences, a San Diego, Calif.-based deep science animal health and nutrition company, raised $46 million in Series B funding. Temasek led the round, and was joined by investors including Anterra Capital, Formation 8 and Cavallo Ventures.
- Q32 Bio, a Cambridge, Mass.-based biotech company developing treatments for autoimmune and inflammatory diseases, raised $46 million in Series A funding. Atlas Venture led the round and was joined by investors including OrbiMed Advisors, Abingworth, Sanofi Ventures, and University of Colorado and Children’s Hospital Colorado Center for Innovation.
- Decibel, a Boston and London-based digital experience analytics company, raised $40 million in Series B funding. Investors include Perwyn, Draper Esprit, Eight Roads Ventures and John Simon.
- Monte Rosa Therapeutics, a Dublin-based company focused on protein degradation, raised $32.5 million in funding from investors Versant Ventures and New Enterprise Associates.
- Wasabi, a Boston-based cloud storage company, raised $30 million in funding led by Forestay Capital.
- Gatsby, a Berkeley, Calif.-based web development platform, raised $28 million in Series B funding. Index Ventures led the round, and was joined by investors including CRV and Trinity Ventures.
- Dishcraft Robotics, a San Carlos, Calif.-based provider of a dishware delivery service, raised $20 million in Series A1 funding. Grit Ventures led the round, and was joined by investors including First Round Capital, Baseline Ventures, Fuel Capital, and Lemnos.
- Bright.md, a Portland, Ore.-based healthcare automation company, raised $16.7 million in Series C funding. B Capital, Seven Peaks Ventures and Concord Health Partners co-led the round.
- D-ID, an Israeli tech startup addressing privacy, raised $13.5 million in a Series A funding. AXA Venture Partners led the round and was joined by investors including Y-Combinator, AI Alliance, Hyundai Motor Company, Pitango Venture Capital, OMRON Ventures, Maverick Ventures, Mindset Ventures and Redds Capital. Read more.
- CaptivateIQ, a sales commission automation company, raised $13 million in Series A funding led by Sequoia.
- Almanac, a San Francisco-based cloud-based platform for open-source docs, raised $9 million in seed funding. Floodgate led the round.
- Meniga, a provider of digital banking technology, raised €8.5 million in funding from Groupe BPCE, Grupo Crédito Agrícola, and UniCredit.
- Tugboat Logic, a Burlingame, Calif.-based provider of a virtual security officer platform, raised $8 million in funding. Inovia Capital led the round.
- Rowdy Mermaid Kombucha, a Boulder, Colo.-based beverage company, raised $3.5 million in additional Series A funding. KarpReilly led the investment.
- Census, a San Francisco-based company syncs organizations’ data warehouses with apps and tools, raised $4.3 million in seed funding. Andreessen Horowitz led the round and was joined by investors including SV Angel, Adam Gross (ex-CEO of Heroku), Ryan Petersen (CEO of Flexport), Fritz Lanman (CEO of ClassPass), Alex MacCaw (CEO of Clearbit), and Max Mullen (Co-Founder of Instacart).
- Toro, a San Francisco-based data quality monitoring solution, raised $4 million in seed funding. Costanoa Ventures and Point72 Ventures co-led the round, and was joined by investors including Head of Data at Uber Jai Ranganathan, and head of machine learning platform for Uber's self-driving arm, Yu Guo.
- Stork Club, a San Francisco-based maternity care platform, raised $2.7 million in seed funding from Bowery Capital, Slow Ventures, Arianna Simpson (Partner at Andreessen Horowitz) and Kevin Mahaffey (Co-founder of Lookout).
- KKR committed $1 billion to form Global Technical Realty, a data center platform in Europe.
- Goldfinch Partners invested $125 million in payments fraud detection company Vesta, a Lake Oswego, Ore.-based payments fraud detection company.
- Partnerize, a portfolio company of Accel-KKR, acquired BrandVerity, a Seattle-based SaaS provider of brand protection solutions for businesses. Financial terms weren't disclosed.
- Sunstone Partners invested in Med Tech Solutions, a healthcare information technology company.
- Apple acquired Inductiv, an Ontario-based AI company, to work on Siri and machine learning initiatives. Financial terms weren't disclosed. Read more.
- A unit of Ola will acquire Etergo, an Amsterdam-based electric scooter company.
- FedEx Corp is close to taking a stake in Hermes, a German parcel delivery firm. Read more.
- A group of 14 investors including Shenzhen Sequoia Hanchen Equity Investment Partnership plan to invest 1.9 billion yuan ($266 million) in the semiconductor unit of Chinese electric carmaker BYD has brought in a group Read more.
- JDE Peet’s, the Europe-based maker of packaged coffees, is set to raise 2.6 billion euros ($2.6 billion) in an IPO in Amsterdam. It has attracted buyers including George Soros’ Quantum Partners. Read more.
- ZoomInfo Technologies, a Vancouver, Wash.-based platform for sales and marketing, plans to raise $757 million in an offering of 44.5 million shares priced between $16 to $18. It posted revenue of $293 million in 2019 and loss of $78 million. TA Associates and Carlyle back the firm. It plans to list on the Nasdaq as “ZI.” Read more.
- Big Hit Entertainment, the management label of South Korean K-Pop group BTS, filed for a preliminary review of a planned initial public offering, Read more.
BANKRUPTCIES AND BREAKUPS
- The U.S. division of bakery chain Le Pain Quotidien filed for bankruptcy protection and plans to sell its business for $3 million to fast-casual restaurant operator Aurify Brands. Read more.
- Tuesday Morning Corp. a discount home-goods retailer, filed for bankruptcy protection.
- A consortium including Mediterrania Capital Partners acquired MetaMed, a platform of diagnostic imaging centers in Egypt, Jordan and Saudi Arabia, from Gulf Capital.
- Savant Systems agreed to acquire GE Lighting, the lighting division of GE (NYSE: GE). Financial terms weren't disclosed.
- Basis Vectors, which plans to acquire vertically-focused B2B Software as a Service companies, launched with a $50 million fund. Cianna Capital leads the fund.
- Race Capital, a San Francisco based early stage venture fund run by BEA systems, is raising capital. The fund is seeking to raise $125 to $150 million, per a source.
- Owl Rock named new leadership for the firm’s opportunistic investing strategy: Nicole Drapkin, Managing Director at Owl Rock, and Jesse Huff, formerly of Oaktree Capital Management.