Paysafe Seals Blank-Check Merger


Paysafe, a London-based online payments company that’s jointly owned by the private equity firms Blackstone and CVC Capital Partners, has reached a deal to go public by merging with a blank-check firm that’s backed by the American businessman Bill Foley, marking itself as one of the biggest-ever companies to take the blank-check route to the public markets.

Paysafe has agreed to merge with Foley Trasimene Acquisition Corp. II, a blank-check firm that raised $1.3 billion in its debut this August. The $1.3 billion figure placed Foley Trasimene II as one of the biggest-ever blank-check firms, being an outlier by the amount raised compared to other blank-check firms. That money will now go to Paysafe, plus an extra $2 billion that’s been committed by other investors such as Fidelity, Cannae Holdings, and hedge fund Third Point.

Paysafe is one of the biggest online payments business globally, with revenues of over $1 billion as of 2017, which was the year it was taken private in a $3.9 billion deal by the private equity firms Blackstone and CVC Capital Partners. It’s apparent that Blackstone and CVC are now looking towards returns on their investments after only three years of holding Paysafe.

Paysafe expects to be valued at $9 billion upon completion of its blank-check merger, marking it as one of the biggest blank-check debuts ever. Notably, Paysafe going public through the route of a reverse merger is a boon for the entire blank-check ecosystem. With an established company like Paysafe choosing that route, it may encourage other companies of its kind to also do so, paving the way for lots of big privately-held firms to tap into the nascent market for blank-check firms.

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