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Former LSE CEO to launch Spac

written by Bella Palmer
spac

It has been reported that Xavier Rolet could unveil a special purpose acquisition firm (Spac) to target quantum computing companies and investment fintech over the coming days

Xavier Rolet, the former CEO of the London Stock Exchange (LSE), plans to make his own moves within the frenzy surrounding special purpose acquisition companies (Spacs) in the fintech industry. It has been reported that Rolet could unveil his new company – a special purpose acquisition firm established to target quantum computing companies as well as investment fintech –  over the coming days.

Between January and March of this year, 143 Spacs were reported to have raised nearly $43 billion in the US alone, with these kinds of deals swiftly becoming the go-to approach for US fintechs which wish to go public. Big players such as eToro, MoneyLion, SoFi and Payoneer have already taken the Spac route.

Rolet made his support for the somewhat controversial strategy apparent back in February 2021.  He called for the London Stock Exchange Group (LSEG) to join the trend in a paper that urged the UK to revisit and reconsider its rules surrounding Spacs.

Xavier Rolet, who left LSE in 2017, stated in his paper: The UK needs to promptly consider the Spac revolution. Whilst there are significant differences between our markets and those in the US, the appetite for permanent listed capital on the part of ambitious UK and European entrepreneurs and innovators is no less than that of their American counterparts: ask the management teams at Spotify or Markit.

The former LSE CEO set to launch his US-listed blank cheque company worth $300 million can already be found on the board of another blank-check company: Golden Falcon Acquisition Corp is led by ex-Barclays banker Makram Azar, and reportedly raised nearly $345 million in December of last year.

According to sources close to Rolet, Credit Suisse Group AG is set to be advising on the proposed IPO. Anonymous sources also revealed that Serge Harry will also play a role in Rolet’s new blank cheque firm, having already served as one of Rolet’s main lieutenants when they worked together at LSE, and gone on to serve as deputy chief executive officer at CQS.

Rolet added in his paper: Spacs represent a financial instrument that should not be overlooked and where agility could realise considerable benefits to credible British and European entrepreneurs and dealmakers.

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