SPAC: Quantum Computing Startup Rigetti To Go Public In $1.5B Deal
Rigetti Computing, a startup working in the difficult space of quantum computing, will go public by merging with a special-purpose acquisition company in a deal valuing it at $1.5bn.
- Rigetti is merging with Supernova Partners Acquisition Company II (NYSE: SNII), a SPAC formed by Spencer Rascoff, the co-founder of real estate tech giant Zillow. Rascoff has launched three serial SPACs under the Supernova name, the second of which Rigetti will merge with.
- From the merger, Rigetti will get $345mn of cash held in trust by the Supernova SPAC, assuming no investor redemptions, but that’s a bold assumption these days where the average SPAC deal redemption is more than 50%.
- Additionally, Rigetti will raise a $100mn PIPE round from investors including Palantir Technologies (NYSE: PLTR); Keysight Technologies, a maker of electronics test equipment; and In-Q-Tel, the venture capital arm of the US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA).
- Expectedly, Rigetti is still in the research and development (R&D) phase working hard to develop quantum computing hardware and software. It makes money from rendering R&D services for private companies or public agencies like the US Energy Department.
- Rigetti’s revenues are currently small, in fact just $5.5mn for the fiscal year ended January 2021, according to its investor presentation. That makes its valuation from the SPAC deal a multiple of nearly 300x annual sales, talk about high.
- The merger is expected to be completed this year or the next, afterward which Rigetti will start trading on the New York Stock Exchange.