Perelman to raise $500m SPAC

Following the lead of Tom Hicks and Michael Gross, US billionaire Ron Perelman plans to raise a $500 million blank-cheque pool to complete an unspecified acquisition.

US billionaire Ron Perelman plans to raise a $500 million (€340 million) special purpose acquisition vehicle, according to a Securities and Exchange Commission filing.

Ron Perelman

The SPAC, called MAFS Acquisition Corp, will list 50,000,000 units on the American Stock Exchange at a price of $10 per unit. Each unit consists of one unit of common stock and one warrant. Citigroup will be the lead underwriter for the listing, which the filing said would occur sometime in 2008.

MAFS will seek to acquire a private company, but noted that it has no specific business combination in mind, nor will it limit its search to a specific industry or group of industries. MAFS will have 24 months to complete an acquisition after the date of its IPO; otherwise it must liquidate the fund.

Perelman has been a Wall Street fixture since the 1970s. His investment company, MacAndrews & Forbes, made a series of high profile buyouts over the years, including the acquisitions of Revlon Corporation and Marvel Comics.

High-profile former private equity general partners, such as Michael Gross from Apollo Management, have become affiliated with SPACs, which have acquired companies such as Jamba Juice and American Apparel.

Hicks, Muse, Tate & Furst founder Tom Hicks raised a $552 million SPAC this October, three years after leaving his namesake firm. Hicks said the fund, which is the largest SPAC ever raised, will target a non-energy business in the US or Canada.

Nicholas Berggruen’s Freedom Acquisition Holdings previously held the title of largest SPAC IPO, when Berggruen raised $528 million last December to take European hedge fund GLG Partners public through a reverse merger. Former US vice president Dan Quayle and former Notre Dame football coach Lou Holtz are also planning to raise $500 million for a SPAC, according to The Los Angeles Times.