Billionaire investor Bill Ackman is eyeing a second SPAC deal even though he will miss his own Q1 deadline to find a first target

Bill Ackman
Bill Ackman.

  • Pershing Square chief Bill Ackman is already planning a second SPAC, but hasn’t yet found a first target.
  • Airbnb, Stripe, and Bloomberg LP were previously said to be among his blank-check firm’s first targets.
  • Ackman said he believes his SPAC will be an important contributor to his hedge fund’s performance.
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Hedge fund billionaire Bill Ackman is already planning a second blank-check company, although he expects to miss his own first-quarter deadline to find a first target.

The legendary investor had hoped his special purpose acquisition company (SPAC) would find a target by the end of the first quarter, but now admits this might not happen. Prior targets on the list of his Pershing Square Tontine Holdings SPAC included Airbnb, Stripe, and Bloomberg LP, according to Reuters.

“While we previously believed that we would be able to announce a potential transaction by the end of this quarter, we will not be in a position to do so,” Ackman said in a letter to investors on Monday. “We do not intend to make any announcements about PSTH’s transaction progress until we enter into a definitive agreement.”

Ackman said he believes his SPAC will be an important contributor to the hedge fund’s performance and he will likely launch a second one after completing a first merger. Investors in his first SPAC should have the right to invest in the second one “without paying a premium to its cash-in-trust value,” he wrote in the letter.

Ackman’s PSTH was the highest-profile SPAC among hedge funds in 2020, when SPACs raised $83 billion across 248 IPOs, smashing the previous record of $13.6 billion, according to SPACInsider.com. His SPAC raised a record-breaking $4 billion via proceeds from investors in July last year, along with an added $1 billion commitment from Pershing Square.

While he has not told investors which companies he was looking to take over, a previous filing stated he is drawn to “high-quality, venture-backed businesses” that could be classified as “mature unicorns.” Unicorns are privately-held startups with a valuation of more than $1 billion.

The SPAC has until July 21 next year to sign a letter of intent and six months after that to close a signed deal, according to Bloomberg.

Shares in Pershing Square Tontine fell 1.3% in pre-market trading on Tuesday.

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‘This seems like a genocide’: Billionaire investor Bill Ackman slams delays in getting the COVID vaccine to the elderly

Bill Ackman
  • Billionaire investor Bill Ackman tweeted on Tuesday, slamming logistical failures in the US vaccine rollout. 
  • “If Elon Musk can deliver 500k Teslas and Jeff Bezos can provide same-hour delivery, we can vaccinate every American” he tweeted.
  • As of January 4, the US has vaccinated fewer than five million people.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Billionaire investor Bill Ackman tweeted criticisms of the US rollout of the COVID-19 vaccines. He called it a “failure of logistics and mismanagement during the transition” in a series of tweets on January 5.

Ackman, CEO of the hedge fund Pershing Square, criticized the prolonged vaccine rollout as cases continue to increase. The pandemic continues to break records, with average daily cases surpassing 275,000, and more than 350,000 people in the US have now died of COVID-19, according to The COVID Tracking Project.

A record 3900 people died on December 30. Vaccinations so far have been chaotic, as health departments lack staff or expertise to administer the vaccine and get doses to the right places and as of January 4 fewer than 5 million people in the US had been vaccinated.

In a follow-up tweet, Ackman said that there was no logistical excuse for botching the vaccinations.

“If Elon Musk can deliver 500k Teslas and Jeff Bezos can provide same-hour delivery, we can vaccinate every American. The time is now!” he wrote, referring to the CEOs of Tesla and Amazon.

 

In a follow-up tweet, Ackman said the mismanagement of the vaccine “seems like genocide” of the elderly.

“We are killing the Greatest Generation … If the virus killed mostly children rather than the aged, would we sit back and allow this to happen?” he wrote, alluding to ageism.

Pershing Square did not respond to Business Insider’s request for further comment on Ackman’s tweets.

Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, told ABC News’ Martha Raddatz on Sunday that vaccinations could speed up soon. He said that the US could be vaccinating one million people each day.

Ackman’s Pershing Square fund posted a 70% return in 2020, much of which was realized from the firm’s anticipation of the pandemic’s devastating effects on business early in the year through credit-default swaps.

Read the original article on Business Insider