Sunlight Financial to go public via $1.3 billion SPAC deal


Adds details on deal, background

Jan 25 (Reuters) - Sunlight Financial, which provides financing for home solar systems, said on Monday it has agreed to go public by merging with Apollo-backed Spartan Acquisition Corp II SPRQ.N in a $1.3 billion deal, that includes investments by a group led by Chamath Palihapitiya.

Global demand for renewable power is expected to soar over the coming decades as governments and companies move to tackle climate change by curbing greenhouse gas emissions, helped by falling technology costs.

Sunlight's deal with Spartan, a blank check firm - popularly known as SPAC - will also see the company raise $250 million through a private investment in public equity, or PIPE, transaction led by investors Palihapitiya, Coatue and BlackRock Inc BLK.N, among others. ((

Palihapitiya, one of the most prolific sponsors of special purpose acquisition companies (SPACs), has also taken part in other PIPE rounds of companies that went public through such deals, including those of metal 3D printing technology provider Desktop Metal Inc DM.N, rare earths miner MP Materials Corp MP.N and electric bus manufacturer Proterra.

Sunlight equityholders will own about 50% of the combined company after the deal, expected to close in the second quarter of 2021. Spartan shareholders will own about 26% and the PIPE investors will own about 19% of the combined company which will be called Sunlight Financial Holdings Inc.

Blank-check firms, popularly known as SPACs, emerged as the most popular investment vehicles and the primary driving force behind a record year for initial public offerings (IPOs) in 2020, even as overall dealmaking activity tumbled to a three-year low.

(Reporting by Arundhati Sarkar in Bengaluru; Editing by Shinjini Ganguli and Shailesh Kuber)

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