Thursday November 30, 2023

Dodgers Owner’s SPAC Takes Vivid Seats Public

  • Ticket marketplace Vivid Seats is going public through a SPAC merger.
  • The SPAC is owned by L.A. Dodgers co-owner Todd Boehly.
Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports/Design: Alex Brooks
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Few sectors were hit harder by the pandemic than live entertainment, but with over 40% of the U.S. population having received at least one vaccine dose, events companies are ready to tap into pent-up demand.

Vivid Seats, an online ticket marketplace, went public by merging with Horizon Acquisition Corp., a SPAC owned by L.A. Dodgers and L.A. Sparks co-owner Todd Boehly.

  • The deal provides around $769 million in stock and cash to Vivid Seats
  • Revenue will be used to pay off debts, creating a more favorable capital structure.
  • The combined company has an expected market capitalization of $1.95 billion.

Though most sports venues, particularly indoor ones, only allow reduced capacity right now, the NBA and NFL expect full-capacity crowds next season and increased capacity this year. 

There’s reason to be optimistic about the live sports outlook. There were no indications of a COVID-19 outbreak among the Texas Rangers’ full-capacity crowd for Opening Day.

Boehly’s SPAC was created last June when the investment vehicle, which raises money with the intention of acquiring a private company and taking it public, was becoming increasingly trendy. 

SPAC fever continued through March, but recent guidance by the SEC on accounting practices related to SPACs has caused some investors to hit the brakes.

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