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PE和SPACS之间的爱恨情仇

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Finance & economics

财经板块

Company buyouts

公司收购

Frenemies

亦敌亦友

The uneasy partnership between private equity and SPACS

私人股本和SPACS之间不稳定的合作关系

The spectacle of the SPAC, or "special-purpose acquisition company", has preoccupied bankers on Wall Street over the past year. This is in part because the vehicles, which list a shell company on stockmarkets and raise a pot of capital before hunting for a private company to merge with, are often touted by their backers as an alternative to an initial public offering (IPO). Big banks make meaty fees from their IPO businesses. For some, the fact that SPACS have muscled in is an unwelcome development. As voracious buyers of private firms, though, SPACS are attracting as much attention among the private-equity (PE) barons on New York's Park Avenue as on Wall Street.

SPAC(或“特殊目的收购公司”)的壮观景象在过去一年里让华尔街的银行家们忧心忡忡。部分原因是这些投资工具经常被其支持者吹捧为首次公开募股(IPO)之外的另一种选择。这些投资工具将空壳公司上市,并在寻找私人公司合并之前筹集大量资金。大银行从IPO业务中赚取丰厚的佣金。对一些人来说,SPACS强行介入是一种不受欢迎的发展。尽管如此,作为对私人公司如痴如渴的买家,SPACS在纽约公园大道和华尔街的私募股本(PE)巨头中吸引了同样多的关注。

Since the start of 2020 SPACS have gobbled up almost $200bn in capital. The way they are constructed makes them prone to overpaying for firms. Creators see no compensation unless they strike a deal with a mergertarget, which must often be done within two years. The founders' payoff is usually 20% of the shares the SPAC helps issue in the newly public firm, which are given to them for a nominal fee. This means that even if the shares plunge afterthe shell company merges with its target, the founders are still well compensated. Their incentive is thus to do any deal they can, at lofty prices if necessary.

自2020年初以来,SPACS已经吸纳了近2000亿美元的资本。它们的构造方式使得它们倾向于为公司支付过高的价格。创造者看不到任何补偿,除非他们与并购目标达成协议,而这通常必须在两年内完成。创始人的回报通常是SPAC帮助新上市公司发行股份的20%,这些股份以象征性的费用给予他们。这意味着,即使空壳公司与其目标公司合并后股价暴跌,创始人仍能获得丰厚的报酬。因此,他们的动机是尽其所能达成交易,如果必要的话,以高昂的价格成交。

This tendency to overpay is both a blessing and a curse for PE. If a PE firm is looking to offload one of its portfolio companies, then finding a SPAC to buy it is an attractive prospect. In March Blackstone and CVC Capital Partners, two PE shops, tripled their money when they sold Paysafe, a payments platform, through a SPAC mergerled by Bill Foley, an insurance executive. After Blackstone achieved record first-quarter earnings of $1.75bn Jon Gray, its president, noted on an earnings call that SPACS had emerged as a new exit option.

这种支付过高的倾向对PE来说是福也是祸。如果一家私人股本公司希望将其投资组合中的某家公司的资产剥离,那么找到SPAC来收购是一个很有吸引力的前景。今年3月,两家私募股权投资公司黑石集团和CVC资本合伙公司通过一家由保险公司高管比尔·弗利合并的SPAC公司出售了支付平台Paysafe,使其收益翻了三倍。在黑石实现创纪录的17.5亿美元首季度盈利后,该公司总裁乔恩·格雷在一次业绩电话会议上指出SPACS已成为新的退出选择。

But PE firms also need to purchase private companies fortheir new funds, ideally at low valuations if they are to make the juicy returns theirinvestors have come to expect. Little is known publicly about the deals that PE firms miss out on, but reports abound of SPACS bidding 20-50% more for companies than the most optimistic valuations by analysts in PE shops.

但如果想获得投资者期望的丰厚回报,私人股本公司也需要为其新基金收购私人公司,且最好以较低的估值收购。公众对私募股权公司错过的交易知之甚少,但有大量报道称SPACS对公司的出价比私募股权投资公司分析师最乐观的估值高出20-50%。

A further complication in the relationship between blank-cheque vehicles and PE is that some PE giants are setting up SPACS themselves. Apollo, for instance, has launched five in recent years. That could pose a dilemma: should a target firm be bought through the private arm, to the benefit of the investors in the PE fund, or by the public arm, to the benefit of the investors in the SPAC? The SPAC frenzy might yield juicy returns for PE investors who bought into a fund a decade ago. But tricky choices loom.

空白支票公司和私募股权公司之间的关系更加复杂的是,一些私募股权巨头正在自己建立SPACS。例如,阿波罗近年来已经发起了5次。这可能会造成一个困境:目标公司是应该通过私人部门(为PE基金投资者的利益)收购,还是通过公共部门(为SPAC投资者的利益)收购?SPAC的狂热可能会给十年前买入一只基金的私人股本投资者带来丰厚的回报。但棘手的选择近在眼前。

译文由可可原创,仅供学习交流使用,未经许可请勿转载。

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