Vertex buys streaming platform 17LIVE Inc for $676 mn

Singapore-based Vertex Technology Acquisition Corp (VTAC), the first special purpose acquisition company (SPAC) to be listed in the city-state, has announced its acquisition of live streaming platform 17LIVE Inc for a sum of up to S$925.1 million ($676 million).
Dollar spending on technologyThis marks a historic event as the first purchase of a private company by a SPAC listed in Singapore since the Singapore Exchange allowed SPACs to float shares in 2021, positioning the country as a hub for this investment vehicle in Asia.

VTAC, which went public in early 2022 and raised approximately S$200 million, will augment its pro-forma equity value through this acquisition, potentially reaching up to S$1.16 billion. To finance the deal, VTAC will raise additional funds from institutional or accredited investors through private placement, Reuters news report said.

17LIVE, chaired and co-founded by Joseph Phua, foresees the listing as a catalyst for the company’s growth in Southeast Asia and beyond. With over half a million average monthly active users in the first half of fiscal 2023 and key markets in Japan and Taiwan, 17LIVE generated a revenue of $363.7 million in 2022 and has maintained profitability since 2020.

Jiang Hong Hui, CEO of VTAC, expressed confidence in 17LIVE’s potential, seeing the company at an inflection point and backed by a robust management team. The proposed deal involves issuing up to 160.6 million new shares at S$5.00 each, with an additional issuance of 24.4 million new shares once specific financial targets are met.

The acquisition is expected to receive the necessary approvals for completion by the end of 2023. Upon finalization, VTAC will be rebranded as 17LIVE Group Ltd and commence trading on the Singapore stock exchange, marking a significant milestone in the country’s SPAC landscape.