EF Hutton, the company behind Trump SPAC deal, launches its own SPAC

November 3, 2021, 12:10 AM UTC

Less than two weeks after the stock price of a special purpose acquisitions company linked to former president Donald Trump jumped more than 1,000% in just two days before falling back to earth, the company behind that deal is launching its own SPAC

Last month, the former president announced plans to raise money for his social media venture, Trump Media & Technology Group, by going public through a SPAC merger with Digital World Acquisition. EF Hutton, an investment bank—not to be confused with the former stock brokerage, is acting as the sole financial and capital-markets adviser to the Trump-linked SPAC, Digital World Acquisition Corp., according to a statement last month. According to an SEC filing, EF Hutton has created a new shell company, EF Hutton Acquisition, and intends to raise $125 million from investors with a $10 a share offering “as soon as practicable,” with a plan to make acquisitions of small consumer and retail companies. 

The new filing comes amid a report by the New York Times that Digital World Acquisition, may have violated securities laws because Trump and financier Patrick Orlando were allegedly in discussions about the merger months before Digital World Acquisition’s public debut. The SPAC raised nearly $300 million mostly from big investors, when it went public in September.  

EF Hutton, an investment bank formerly known as Kingswood Capital Markets, rebranded in June and is different from the famed stock brokerage firm E.F. Hutton & Co., known for its commercials in the 1970s and ‘80s until a scandal led to its sale. But the new EF Hutton has some ties to the original: one of the firm’s directors is Stanley Hutton Rumbough, the 73-year-old grandson of Edward Francis Hutton, co-founder of E.F. Hutton & Co. 

So far in 2021, more than 500 SPACs have debuted in the U.S., raising nearly $140 billion in the process, according to SPAC Research. By comparison, 247 SPACs listed in the U.S. a year ago, having raised $83.4 billion. SEC Chair Gary Gensler has been an outspoken proponent for more disclosures about the SPAC model. 

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