NBA Hall of Famer Shaquille O’Neal had joined the SPAC trend, joining as a strategic advisor for Forest Road Acquisition Corp FRX.
The NBA Legend: O’Neal was an early investor in Google GOOG and also was a spokesman and early investor in Ring, the home security company acquired by Amazon.com AMZN.
Shaq owns franchised restaurants under the Auntie Anne’s and Papa John’s brands.
O’Neal sits on the Board of Directors of Papa John’s International PZZA. He's also a stakeholder in Papa John’s through the payment of shares for his endorsement/partnership with the company.
The Disney Connection: While O’Neal’s name stands out, it could be the involvement of three former Walt Disney Co DIS executives that make this SPAC attractive to investors.
Thomas Staggs served as the Chief Financial Officer of Disney from 1998 to 2010. Under Staggs’s leadership, Disney acquired Capital Cities/ABC. He was also part of the acquisitions of Pixar and Marvel Entertainment. As the Chairman of Walt Disney Parks and Resorts, Staggs pushed for the company to open a theme park in Shanghai.
Kevin Mayer is the former Executive Vice President of the internet group at Disney, which included ESPN.com. Mayer was also part of Disney’s direct to consumer strategy and part of the team that launched Disney+.
Salil Mehta worked at Disney from 1994 to 2008. He is a former Executive Vice President for the ESPN Enterprises division. He also held positions at Comcast Corporation CMCSA unit NBC and Fox Corporation FOX.
The Offering: Forest Road Acquisition plans to sell 25 million units in an offering. Each unit will come with one-third of a warrant to purchase a common share for $11.50. The units will split into common shares and warrants 52 days after the offering. Common shares will be listed on the NYSE as FRX.
About Forest Road Acquisition Corp: The company plans on acquiring a company in the TMT (technology, media, telecom) market, believing there is long term growth in the sector. The listing discusses new forms of consumption and distribution and intellectual property driving value expansion.
Forest Road Acquisition plans on acquiring a company that has predictable free cash flow, formidable barriers to entry, is attractively valued, can benefit from going public, has exceptional management and has a platform in place for organic growth.
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