Redbird Capital Partners, the US investment firm led by Gerry Cardinale, has joined forces with Billy Beane of Oakland A’s to form RedBall Acquisition Corp, in what will be the first sports-focused special purpose acquisition company (SPAC).
An initial public offering (IPO) was filed by the securities and exchange commission (SEC), with RedBall hoping to generate US$500 million to buy a professional sports franchise. The company, which operates under ‘RBAC.U’ on the New York Stock Exchange, has the freedom to secure a company in no particular sector.
According to the filing, ‘it intends to focus on businesses in the sports, media and data analytics sectors, with a focus on professional sports franchises, which complement the management team’s expertise and will benefit from its strategic and hands-on operational leadership.’
In order to raise the US$500 million, the offering on the New York Stock Exchange will consist of 50 million shares sold at US$10 a piece. While RedBall hunt for the appropriate sports team to grab their hands on, shareholder money will be held for 24 months. If after that time the money is not invested, it shall be returned.
Beane, who became recognised because of his data-drive approach while being general manager of Major League Baseball (MLB) team Oakland Athletics, will be co-chairman alongside Cardinale. Joining them on the management side of things will be Alec Scheiner, chief executive, and Luke Bornn, executive vice president.
RedBall’s file continues to say, “We believe that the experience and capabilities of our management team will make us an attractive partner to potential target businesses, enhance our ability to complete a successful business combination, and bring value to the business post-business combination.”
“Our management team represents a unique combination of operating, investing, financial and transactional experience. This group has a strong track record of creating value for shareholders in multiple sports, media and data analytics companies that we have led, managed and/or invested in.”
According to SPAC Research, US$19.3 billion have already been raised in 2020 by SPACs.
A current investor in YES Network, last week RedBird acquired an 85 percent stake in French football team, Toulouse FC. Current owner, Oliver Sadran, will retain 15 percent of the club continuing to be a member on the board.
Author: James Parker