Leading Australian investors including Uluwatu Capital, Artesian and AS1 Growth Partners have put their weight behind a new special purpose acquisition company (SPAC) aimed at fast-tracking a NASDAQ listing for a yet to be defined Australian or New Zealand tech company.
Currently known as Integral Acquisition Corporation 1 (Integral 1) and based in Australia, the company's leadership will start conversations with leading technology companies which have valuations of between $500 million and $1 billion.
Integral 1's US$115 million ($155 million) listing was several times oversubscribed with the company now trading under the symbol INTEU, led by its founder and CEO Enrique Klix, an ex-McKinsey and Citigroup executive, and chairman James Cotton, founder of CMO Compliance and Uluwatu Capital.
Integral 1’s Board of Directors is completed by Stuart Hutton, Niraj Javeri, and Lynne Thornton.
US-based firms Crescent Park Management and Carnegie Park Capital also participated in the SPAC listing with commitments for a collective US$30 million ($40 million) in the form of forward purchase agreements.
"Over the past 20 years, Australia and New Zealand have grown into hotbeds of innovation, with established tech hubs producing some of the world’s leading businesses in their field," says Klix, who is also an investor in the SPAC.
"We’re seeing more companies than ever coming out of our local tech ecosystem valued at over $100 million and there are no signs of this slowing.
"We believe the NASDAQ represents a more natural home for high growth tech startups looking to solve global problems, providing access to investors that understand their value as well as appropriate benchmarks and a broader community of analysts focused on technology companies."
Klix says the Integral 1 team has superior a local knowledge, investor network and understanding of the landscape in Australia and New Zealand, making them best placed to "enable companies with international ambitions to access the best possible opportunities for growth".
Artesian managing partner Matthew Clunies-Ross says his group has never before been so encouraged by the depth and breadth of startup talent coming out of Australia and New Zealand.
"As these businesses grow and their ambitions turn to international expansion, we must consider the best routes for our homegrown talent to reach its global potential," Clunies-Ross says.
"A NASDAQ listing opens up a multitude of doors for companies with global ambitions and a SPAC represents the most cost and time effective route to capitalising on these opportunities.
"We believe Enrique, James, and the team at Integral 1 are uniquely placed to uncover Australia and New Zealand’s next great success and bring it to the global stage."
The listing comes at a time of rapid growth for Australian and New Zealand technology companies. Venture capital investment in local companies has seen a 30 per cent compound annual growth rate over the last five years, with more than $2.5 billion invested last year alone.
The move aims to emulate success stories like Australia's Atlassian (NASDAQ: TEAM) and New Zealand's Rocket Lab (NASDAQ: RKLB).
Brisbane-based electric vehicle fast charger Tritium is also set to launch on the NASDAQ, after entering a merger with the SPAC Decarbonization Plus Acquisition Corporation II (NASDAQ: DCRN) in May.
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