Vegas Golden Knights owner Bill Foley has filed for two new special purpose acquisition companies today, asking for $1.5 billion in total, to hunt for companies in financial services or business services to bring public. The two SPACs, Austerlitz Acquisition Corp. I and II, are Foley’s third and fourth SPACs in the past year.
The prospectus for Austerlitz I also states that sports could be a potential target: “We may also pursue a target outside of the financial technology or information services sector should we find an attractive business that fits within William P. Foley, II’s historical areas of business expertise. Mr. Foley has extensive industry experience in real estate, insurance, alcoholic consumer beverages including wine and spirits, sports and business-to-business (“B2B”) business services.”
Foley led the group which brought the Golden Knights franchise to Las Vegas as part of the NHL’s expansion process earlier this decade. Austerlitz I is seeking $500 million in the sale of 50 million units, which will consist of one share and a fourth of a warrant, the right to buy an additional share at $11.50. Foley is the founder and director of both new SPACs.
The language around a possible sports interest isn’t present in the IPO filing for Austerlitz II, which seeks to raise $1 billion with the same unit structure as its sibling. SPACs, however, can make any acquisition they see fit with few restrictions—as long as it can finance the deal, which typically means a significant number of shareholders need to approve the targeted acquisition.
Foley’s earlier blank checks, Foley Trasimene I and II, raised about $2.5 billion. Trasimene II has inked a deal to bring Paysafe public. Paysafe has a significant business within sports gambling payments. The first Trasimene acquired Alight, a cloud service provider. Each of those SPACs had similar target statements to Foley’s new efforts.
Sports personalities are flocking to SPACs, with a series of team owners, executives and players forming dozens of SPACs since last spring. Like all SPACs, the Austerlitz entities have a limited time to find a company to merge with—in this case 24 months—or return IPO capital to shareholders.