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May. 27, 20214 min read

Acorns Could Become a Mighty Oak Through SPAC Merger

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Written by Staff

  • Spare change investing app to go public later this year…
  • Merger deal values Acorns at $2.2 billion…
  • Company will trade on NASDAQ under ticker OAKS…

Investing app Acorns is preparing to go public in a SPAC merger.

The fintech startup announced today it will go public via a blank check merger with Pioneer Merger Corp. later this year.

That listing will value Acorns at $2.2 billion and is expected to go through in the second half of 2021. 

Acorns says the “combined public company expected to have over $450M cash balance at closing .”

Pioneer closed its $402.5 million IPO in January ahead of the SEC’s move to squash the SPAC boom.

As part of the merger, Acorns CEO Noah Kerner “plans to contribute 10% of his personal ownership in Acorns to fund a novel program giving shares to eligible customers. Pioneer’s sponsor is also planning to give 10% of its ownership in Acorns to this same program.”

“Our loyal customers have gotten us here,” said Kerner. “They’ve earned a right to become owners alongside us, and help us grow together into the mighty oak that Acorns was meant to become. To that end, we intend to introduce our share rewards program that will allow eligible customers to own a piece of the company and an even greater piece as they invite others to start the path toward financial wellness.”

$OAKS

Image credit: Marcio Jose Bastos Silva/Shutterstock.com

Acorns Grow Incorporated will become Acorns Holdings, Inc. and will be listed on the NASDAQ under the ticker symbol OAKS.

That choice is a nod to the saying “mighty oaks from little acorns grow”.

Kerner will maintain his position as CEO over the new company.

The CEO said, “Now was the time to go public to accelerate our growth and get the tools of responsible wealth-making in everyone’s hands as fast as possible, when they need it most. We just saw this as an accelerant on that journey.”

The listing comes amid ramped-up activity in the stock market during the pandemic as day traders and retail investors jumped onto Wall Street.

Acorns said it has seen subscriber growth double since 2019 and forecast it will have 10 million American subscribers by 2025.

The company previously looked to go public through a traditional IPO but Kerner chose to abandon that plan and said he saw Pioneer’s Chairman John Christodoro as the right partner for a SPAC listing.

Christodoro said, “Acorns is not only a category leader but also a category creator. Its value proposition is built around inclusive, long-term financial wellness. With integrity at its core, the brand has an incredibly loyal following and market-leading retention rates. I could not be more excited to partner with Acorns.”

SPAC listings have been popular in the fintech space.

Banking startup Social Finance Inc., real-estate platform Better Holdco Inc., and trading app eToro Group Ltd. have all gone public through SPAC mergers in recent months.

What is Acorns?

Acorns is a subscription-based passive investment app that automatically invests subscribers’ money into index funds. 

The app has three subscription tiers that allow users to invest their money for individual savings, retirement, or future savings for their children. 

The app’s most popular feature is its “round-ups.”

That feature automatically rounds up subscribers’ debit card purchases to the nearest dollar and invests the spare change.

Acorns says its users “have saved and invested over $9.6 billion for the future.”

Acorns’ existing investors include PayPal Holdings Inc., NBCUniversal, and celebrities like Jennifer Lopez and Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson.

Kerner says Acorns’ business is focused on helping its users generate long-term wealth.

“We are putting the tools of wealth making in everyone’s hands and making it possible for everyday consumers to responsibly manage their money over the long-term.”

Featured cover image editorial credit: PREMIO STOCK / Shutterstock.com