Good morning, Term Sheet readers. Tech writer Danielle Abril here, filling in for Lucinda.
I’m watching the clock as time ticks away for TikTok.
On Thursday, President Donald Trump signed an executive order that would ban the social media app (plus separately Chinese-owned WeChat) in the U.S. if it isn’t sold within 45 days.
That’s left TikTok’s owner ByteDance with about six weeks to attract suitors, hammer out complex negotiations, and sign a deal.
Fortunately for TikTok, Microsoft is champing at the bit. Meanwhile, ByteDance CEO Zhang Yiming reportedly told its employees that leadership was working “around the clock” to achieve the “best outcome,” according to Bloomberg. But he believes the timeline is “unreasonable” and that Trump’s “real objective” is to move forward with a ban.
So how practical is Trump’s six-week deadline?
Two experts gave us some insight on the matter: Six weeks is fast, but how fast is debatable.
Adam Haller, a partner who leads Bain & Co.’s tech and M&A practices, said he’s seen deals get done in as quickly as two weeks, though that’s not necessarily the norm. “Every deal is unique, and every deal has its own complexities,” Haller said. “Forty-five days is quick but very much in the window of a normal deal.”
This deal may be a little more complicated, though, Haller added. Potential government inquiries or negotiations during the sale could delay the process.
Chris Griner, chair of the national security and compliance group at Stroock & Stroock & Lavan LLP, said he sees many acquisitions take an average of six months. In cases where there are national security concerns, the government sometimes requests that the company be put into a trust while it searches for a buyer. This helps mitigate the security risk without rushing a deal.
But there’s no two ways about it: TikTok’s sale defies the norm, Griner said. “You have to think of it more as a forced divestiture of a Chinese company,” he said. “That’s what differentiates it.”
Microsoft will likely spend the next few weeks reviewing TikTok’s finances and technical infrastructure and understanding how ByteDance intends to separate TikTok from its business. Microsoft will also have to figure out financing—will it involve a stock swap? Is it an all-cash deal? Does Microsoft need lenders?
And ByteDance will be trying to get the most money out of whatever company ultimately buys TikTok without dragging the process beyond the deadline. Then the deal has to get the blessing of the U.S. government.
Completing a deal like this one boils down to one thing, Griner says: “A lot of midnight oil for some lawyers.”
Anne Sraders curated today’s Term Sheet.
-Epic Games, the Cary, N.C.-based company that created popular video game Fortnite, raised $1.8 billion in funding, which includes a $250 million investment from Sony, from investors including BlackRock, Fidelity, Lightspeed Venture Partners, Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan Board, Baillie Gifford, T. Rowe Price Associates, KKR, Smash Ventures, and investor David Tepper. Read more.
-Aerovate Therapeutics, a Boston-based drug developer focused on rare cardiopulmonary disease, raised $72.6 million in Series A funding. Sofinnova Investments led the round, and was joined by investors including Atlas Venture, Cormorant Asset Management, Surveyor Capital, and Osage University Partners.
-Mode Analytics, a San Francisco-based advanced data analytics platform, raised $33 million in Series D funding. H.I.G. Growth Partners led the round, and was joined by investors including Valor Equity Partners, Foundation Capital, REV Venture Partners, and Switch Ventures.
-TemperPack, a Richmond, Va.-based thermal packaging company, raised $31.3 million in Series C funding. Wheatsheaf Group led the round, and was joined by investors including Revolution Growth, Harbert Growth Partners, SJF Ventures, Arborview Capital, Tao Capital, Third Prime Capital and Greenhouse Capital. Read more.
-AppHarvest, a Morehead, Ky.-based indoor farming and greenhouse operator, raised $28 million in Series C funding. Narya led the round, and was joined by investors including ValueAct Capital’s Spring Fund, Revolution’s Rise of the Rest Seed Fund, Equilibrium, Lupa Systems, Breyer Capital, S2G Ventures, Black Capital, and Endeavor Catalyst.
-Big Run Studios, an Oakland, Calif.-based online games developer, raised $5.3 million in seed funding. Transcend Fund led the round, and was joined by Galaxy Interactive.
-Obsidio, a Columbia, S.C.-based preclinical medical device developer focused on embolotherapy, raised $3 million in funding. IAG Capital Partners led the round, and was joined by investors including Good Growth Capital and angel investors.
-HyperQube Technologies, an Arlington, Va.-based platform that gives IT teams the ability to copy entire cloud networks for testing, raised $2.5 million in seed funding led by Leawood Venture Capital.
-OceanSound Partners recapitalized Netrix, a Bannockburn, Ill.-based cloud infrastructure and IT services platform for small and midsize enterprise companies. Financial terms were not disclosed.
-Alpenglow Rail and Connor, Clark & Lunn Infrastructure acquired USA Rail, a Texas-based rail terminals operator. Financial terms were not disclosed.
-Presidio Petroleum, owned by Morgan Stanley Energy Partners, acquired the oil and natural gas assets of Templar Energy, an Oklahoma City, Okla.-based oil and natural gas exploration and production company that recently filed for bankruptcy, as well as some affiliates in the Anadarko Basin. Financial terms were not disclosed.
-Northstar Capital invested in Yale Cordage, a Saco, Maine-based synthetic rope manufacturer owned by River Associates. Financial terms were not disclosed.
-Novacap acquired an interest in FortNine, a Montreal-based online marketplace for motorcycle and powersports gear. Financial terms were not disclosed
-Dan Friedkin, an American billionaire and CEO of The Friedkin Group, will buy AS Roma, a Serie A Italian football club for €591 million ($700 million). Read more.
-TGS has offered to buy the data library of its rival PGS, a Norway-based seismic surveyor, for $600 million.
-Q CELLS acquired Geli, a San Francisco-based energy storage systems software provider. Financial terms were not disclosed.
-Jacobio Pharmaceuticals, a Beijing-based cancer treatment biotech, is planning an IPO in Hong Kong to raise up to $400 million, Bloomberg reports citing sources. Read more.
-Duck Creek Technologies, a Boston-based software platform for property and casualty insurers, plans to raise $300 million in an IPO by offering of 15 million shares priced between $19 and $21. The firm posted $171.3 million in sales and net losses of $16.9 million for the year ending August 2019. Apax (40.8% pre-offering), Accenture (25.9%), and Kayne Anderson Rudnick Investment Management (8.5%) back the firm. It plans to list on the Nasdaq as “DCT”. Read more.
-PMV Consumer Acquisition, a Palm Beach, Fla.-based blank check company formed by the Gabelli Group, plans to raise up to $175 million in an IPO. It is targeting investments in the consumer industry with $200 million to $3.5 billion valuations. It plans to list on the NYSE as “PMVC.U”. Read more.
-Freeline Therapeutics, a U.K.-based clinical stage gene therapy company focused on liver diseases, raised $159 million in an IPO by offering 8.8 million American Depositary Shares (ADS) priced at $18. Syncona Portfolio Limited (64.7% pre-offering) and Novo Holdings (6.6%) are among the company’s backers. It plans to list on the Nasdaq as “FRLN”. Read more.
-ARYA Sciences Acquisition III, a New York City-based blank check company formed by Perceptive Advisors, raised $130 million in an IPO by offering 13 million shares priced at $10. It is targeting investments in healthcare. It plans to list on the Nasdaq as “ARYA”. Read more.
-Broadstone Net Lease, a Rochester, N.Y.-based single tenant commercial REIT in the U.S. and Canada, plans to raise up to $100 million in an IPO. It plans to list on the NYSE as “BNL”. Read more.
-IBEX, a Hamilton, Bermuda-based outsourced customer support services provider, raised $90 million in an IPO by offering 4.8 million shares priced at $19, lower than its expected range of $20 to $22. The Resource Group backs the firm. It plans to list on the Nasdaq as “IBEX.” Read more.
-Checkmate Pharmaceuticals, a Cambridge, Mass.-based clinical-stage biotech focused on immunotherapies for people living with cancer, raised $75 million in an IPO by offering 5 million shares priced at $15. It plans to list on the Nasdaq as “CMPI”. Read more.
-Intercontinental Exchange (NYSE: ICE) agreed to acquire Ellie Mae, a Pleasanton, Calif.-based cloud-based mortgage lending platform, from Thoma Bravo, valuing the company at $11 billion.
-Marlin Equity Partners agreed to acquire Unifaun, a Stockholm-based cloud delivery solutions provider for transportation management, from Vitruvian Partners. Financial terms were not disclosed. Read more.
-ValueAct Capital Management has reportedly sold all of its 4.5% stake in Rolls-Royce Holdings, the U.K.-based aerospace engineering company, the Financial Times reports citing sources. Read more.
-MetaProp, a New York City-based venture capital firm, plans to raise $200 million for its fund Growth Select I, according to a regulatory filing.
-Silver Falcon Capital added Paul Funkhouser as a vice president. Funkhouser was previously at Houlihan Lokey and Piper Sandler.