With about 300 special-purpose acquisition companies, or SPACs, looking for companies to take public, property technology company Latch chose TS Innovation Acquisition (TSIA). In this Fool Live video clip, recorded on March 8, Fool.com contributor Matt Frankel, CFP, asks Latch CEO Luke Schoenfelder why the Tishman Speyer-sponsored SPAC could be an excellent fit for this fast-growing business.
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Matt Frankel: I saw that you evaluated about 10 SPAC deals, I think is what I read before settling on Tishman Speyer.
Luke Schoenfelder: Yeah.
Frankel: Why them in particular? I know you said they were an early investor of yours, so I'm sure that had something to do with it.
Schoenfelder: It did and it didn't. We had our first SPAC outreach in 2019, which obviously is quaint now, looking back, we're like, "What's a SPAC?" I had that whole cycle of trying to understand what was going on in the fall of 2019. Frankly, we thought it was interesting. It wasn't the right moment right then, we had just raised a $100 million-plus Series B, but we thought it was interesting to track. Then fast forward to this fall, and we had multiple of our early shareholders have their own SPACs. We had this position where we had a lot of inbound, and then we had some of our own shareholders that had their own SPACs. We really needed to look at it and take it seriously. I think as we thought about it, a few things: One, if we look at our long-term vision, we've always known that we wanted to be a stand-alone, independent company. We have not seen anybody else who gets this space or thinks about the space the way that we do, and we believe that we can continue to drive innovation here for a very, very long time, and we're just getting started. So finding a way to be independent and to be able to continue to build these products is really important for us. Ultimately, we thought being a public company was going to be the path, and so if you look at a traditional IPO, you don't necessarily, and well, you don't get that extra strategic partner as part of a transaction. You go and you meet with the BlackRocks, the Fidelitys, the Wellingtons, as part of a roadshow, but to have the ability to go with a close and true strategic partner that opens up new markets and new opportunities through the combination. That was why Tishman Speyer seemed to be the best partner for us, and why we're excited about a SPAC was we felt like one plus one equals three, as opposed to just getting the typical public company shareholder base. We got this extra partnership as part of the next phase of growth.