Polestar closing in on SPAC merger for IPO
Polestar is apparently close to completing the proposed SPAC merger with investment firm Gores Guggenheim that was first leaked in July. The official announcement could be made in the course of today, Monday.
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Reuters news agency, citing sources familiar with the planned US IPO, reports that the merger with Gores Guggenheim could give the proposed joint venture a valuation of around 20 billion US dollars. In July, a Bloomberg report was still talking about $25 billion. The Wall Street Journal added that the SPAC company wants to contribute 250 million US dollars to the planned IPO. Official statements on the merger and Polestar’s planned stock market debut have not yet been made.
Polestar is owned by Volvo Car AB and Zhejiang Geely Holding Group, which is also the 100 per cent owner of Volvo Car. The company is based in Gothenburg, but all vehicles are built in China. With the Polestar 2 sedan, the manufacturer has developed a much-acclaimed electric car. However, there were technical problems a while ago and already two recalls for the model. Nevertheless, the brand is said to have great potential.
Polestar uses the manufacturing capacities of Volvo Cars. As recently announced, the Polestar 3 will be built at the Volvo Cars plant in Ridgeville in the US state of South Carolina. By the middle of the decade, production of future Polestar models will also take place in Europe.
Polestar’s efforts to attract external investors go back to the beginning of 2019 and finally bore fruit for the first time this year: a group of long-term financial investors pumped 550 million US dollars into the company via a capital increase back in the spring. At the time, Polestar described the new investments and the associated diversification of its financing structure as prerequisites for future growth. The funds secured the expansion of available resources for product development and the accompanying acceleration of technological innovations “with a view to launching several groundbreaking vehicles in the coming years”.
Against the backdrop of the capital increase in the spring, Volvo Cars announced in July that it had acquired further shares in the electric car brand Polestar to increase its stake again to 49.5 per cent. This is the level the company already held before the private placement was completed.
Update 23 June 2022
The way is clear for the planned US IPO of the electric car brand Polestar. The shareholders of the investment firm Gores Guggenheim have now approved the SPAC merger with Polestar. Polestar’s shares are to be traded on the Nasdaq under the ticker symbol ‘PSNY’ from 24 June.
Polestar has thus gone through with its plans despite the current market environment – when the SPAC merger was announced, the Ukraine war and its consequences for the markets were not yet foreseeable. Earlier this week, for example, ABB had announced that it was postponing indefinitely the IPO of its E-Mobility division, which had been scheduled for the second quarter (i.e. until the end of June).
reuters.com, polestar.com, businesswire.com (both update)