Months after the special purpose acquisition company (SPAC) bubble burst, investors are still shying away from these assets. We’ve seen this play out with both SPAC stocks that have “de-SPACed” and companies with deals still pending.
Granted, among de-SPACed names, some are still up big from their initial offering price (typically $10 per share.) For instance, EV maker Lucid Group (NASDAQ:LCID) has seen its stock price rise considerably since its debut.
Yet for every winner like Lucid, several former blank-check companies have sunk to single-digit prices post-merger. Prime examples include 23andMe Holding Co. (NASDAQ:ME) and Clover Health (NASDAQ:CLOV).
Among pending SPAC deals, few are trading at heavy premiums to their offering prices. Instead, we are seeing many of them trade at or around the $10 per share level. However, this change in the market’s view of blank-check company stocks may be an opportunity for investors.
With the space currently out of favor among investors, 2022 may be the right time to dive into SPAC stocks. Here are seven promising names to either buy now or keep on your radar in case they fall to a more favorable entry point:
- 26 Capital Acquisition Corp. (NASDAQ:ADER)
- Digital World Acquisition Corp. (NASDAQ:DWAC)
- Fintech Acquisition V (NASDAQ:FTCV)
- Gores Guggenheim (NASDAQ:GGPI)
- USHG Acquisition Corp. (NASDAQ:HUGS)
- Sports Entertainment Acquisition Corp (NYSE:SEAH)
- TPG Pace Beneficial Finance (NYSE:TPGY)
SPAC Stocks: 26 Capital Acquisition Corp (ADER)
Founded by Jason Adler, a financier with an extensive background in gaming, 26 Capital was created to buy casinos and similar properties. It’s doing just that with its deal to acquire Philippine casino resort Okada Manila from its current owner, Japan-based Universal Entertainment Corp.
This transaction will result in Universal owning around an 88% stake in the combined company. The deal values the gaming property at $2.6 billion.
The $275 million in cash this SPAC raised from the sale of ADER stock will be used to finance further growth opportunities. That includes a possible expansion into the recently-opened Japanese market.
Admittedly, this company’s eventual move into Japan is a bit of a long shot. The country is only opening up three casino licenses. Competing with well-established bidders like Caesars Entertainment (NASDAQ:CZR) and MGM Resorts (NYSE:MGM), it may be tough for Okada Manila to grab a piece of the action.
That said, shares could still see long-term appreciation even if its expansion efforts fail to pan out. Per projections from its investor presentation, EBITDA for its Manila property could rise to $516.3 million by 2025 thanks to the pandemic recovery and other factors.
Given the higher EBITDA multiples for similar Asian gaming plays, ADER stock could see big appreciation on multiple expansion alone as it makes its way to this target.
Digital World Acquisition Corp (DWAC)
Yes, unlike the names discussed above and below, DWAC stock trades far above its $10 per share offering price. Also, I’ve been skeptical its merger target, former President Donald Trump’s social media venture Trump Media & Technology Group (TMTG), will ever scale into a business worthy of its current implied valuation.
It has managed to hold onto a nice chunk of its gains from October, despite the fact its meme stock days have largely come and gone. That said, it could still experience a big selloff and fall to a price where the risk-to-return ratio is more in your favor. A big decline could occur not too long after the deal closes.
The lockup provisions of the deal are very favorable to insiders. Investors in its $1 billion private investment in public equity (PIPE) offering may be able to convert securities from the capital raise into DWAC stock at a considerable discount. Both factors could put substantial pressure on shares.
Still, you may want to keep Digital World Acquisition Corp on your radar. If the price is right, it could be worth rolling the dice on Trump’s latest gambit.
It might not become a platform that rivals mainstream social media sites like Meta Platforms’ (NASDAQ:FB) Facebook or Twitter (NASDAQ:TWTR). Yet with its plans to offer subscription-based offerings along with an ad-supported site, it could still become a billion-dollar business.
SPAC Stocks: Fintech Acquisition V (FTCV)
In March, Fintech Acquisition V announced its plans to take crypto and stock trading platform eToro public. Afterward, FTCV stock spiked to as much as $15.70 per share. But since then, it’s drifted back to just below its $10 per share offering price.
There are three reasons why this has happened. The first factor was the souring on SPAC stocks during this timeframe. Second was the big drop in price of one of eToro’s competitors, Robinhood Markets (NASDAQ:HOOD) after it went public last summer.
The third and final influence was continued delays in completing the deal. It’s not likely the merger will close before year’s end, so there is now a big risk that PIPE investors will pull their commitments once the deal deadline expires.
However, that result is not set in stone. The PIPE investors could extend the deadline and the deal could still go through. However, that doesn’t mean investors should buy now. At its $10 per share offering price, this merger deal values eToro at 9.7x estimated revenue for 2022.
It’s not exactly undervalued, as peers like Coinbase (NASDAQ:COIN) and Robinhood now trade at far lower enterprise value-to-sales (EV/Sales) multiples. Although it’s not worth buying pre-merger, a post-merger slump could send FTCV stock to a price where it’s a buy.
Gores Guggenheim (GGPI)
If you missed out on Lucid, you may still have an opportunity to “get in early” on the next hot electric vehicle (EV) play. That is, you can if you decide to buy Gores Guggenheim ahead of its planned merger with Sweden-based EV upstart Polestar.
Backed by Volvo and its corporate parent Geely (OTCMKTS:GELYF), Polestar has already started full-scale activity. Planning to operate in 30 countries by 2023, it’s aiming to sell 290,000 vehicles per year by 2025.
However, while it has as ambitious a growth goal as Lucid or Rivian (NASDAQ:RIVN), based on the current GGPI stock price of $11.60 per share, it’s trading at a far lower implied valuation. The company has a market capitalization around $24 billion based on a post-deal share count of 2.125 billion.
Compare that to Rivian, which has a market capitalization of $85.2 billion, or Lucid, which sports a $62.4 billion market cap. Now, it may be wishful thinking to believe GGPI stock will quickly catch up in the coming months. Yet after the deal closes, a positive view of its potential may be enough to send it back to its recent high of $16.41 per share. Perhaps it could move even higher, depending on what progress Polestar makes with its global expansion.
EV stocks have waned in popularity recently as the overall vehicle electrification trend continues. But bullishness will eventually return to this space. Consider GGPI stock a great buy ahead of this renewed enthusiasm.
SPAC Stocks: USHG Acquisition Corp (HUGS)
USHG Acquisition is a SPAC chaired by Shake Shack (NYSE:SHAK) co-founder Danny Meyer. Differing a bit from most of the aforementioned deals, it’s taking a more-established business public. In a complex deal, Panera Brands (parent company of Panera Bread, Caribou Coffee and Einstein Bros. Bagels) will go public, then merge with this blank-check company.
With the unconventional nature of this SPAC merger, little in terms of the deal’s financials have yet to be released. Therefore, it’s tough to assess whether it’s worth buying HUGS stock at its current price around $10.30 per share.
On one hand, depending on Panera’s initial public offering (IPO) price, investors in this stock may get a position in this soon-to-be public company at a favorable valuation.
On the other hand, if Panera prices its IPO too aggressively, shares in the target could drop after their debut. That would make buying HUGS stock today a losing proposition for investors. Much like DWAC and FTCV stock, consider this SPAC play one for the “wait and see” basket.
If more details emerge about its deal and/or it dips back below its offering price, this may become a buy. For now though, keep it on your watchlist and stay on the sidelines.
Sports Entertainment Acquisition Corp (SEAH)
Since the start of the omicron- and Fed-fueled selloff in November, iGaming and sports betting stocks have been a losing bet. That’s the case for shares in Sports Entertainment Acquisition, which is taking Betway parent Super Group public.
In November, increased awareness caused SEAH stock to spike to as much as $12.48 per share. Since then, however, it’s dipped back to less than $10 per share. Investors who got in near the top may be currently underwater on their wagers. But in time, it could prove to be a winner.
With its U.S. expansion plans potentially doubling its sales, SEAH stock — soon to be SGHC stock — may have room to run in the years ahead. Not only that, this deal is priced at a more than reasonable valuation compared to many of Super Group’s peers. As a Seeking Alpha commentator broke it down in August, once public, the company will have an EV/sales ratio of 2.6x and an EV/EBITDA ratio of 11.1x.
By comparison, U.K.-based Entain Plc (OTCMKTS:GMVHF) has an EV/sales ratio around 3x and an EV/EBITDA ratio of about 18x. Reasonably priced with growth potential, consider this one of the SPAC stocks to buy ahead of its deal close.
SPAC Stocks: TPG Pace Beneficial Finance (TPGY)
Late last year, news of its plans to merge with European charging infrastructure provider EVBox resulted in a “to the moon” rally for TPG Pace. It zoomed from $10 to as as much as $34.28 per share.
Yet since the end of the SPAC bubble, the end of the EV bubble and a continual extension of the deal’s closing date, TPGY stock has tumbled back to around $10 per share.
However, there’s been no new news since November and the deal’s “Outside Date” is coming up on Dec. 31 (after which, the SPAC can terminate the deal.) I’ll admit this looks like a blank-check deal that will not go through.
That said, there are still a few more business days left between now and its deadline. Like the past amendments, the two parties could agree before Dec. 31 to extend the deadline. Even if that by itself won’t ensure the deal goes through, it would increase the likelihood of the merger happening.
Trading at its redemption price, downside risk is low. If the Outside Date isn’t extended, investors will get $10 per share back. On the flipside, if the deal goes through? Like I said back in September, this company is a market leader in Europe and could find big success in the U.S. market.
On the date of publication, Thomas Niel did not hold (either directly or indirectly) any positions in the securities mentioned in this article. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the writer, subject to the InvestorPlace.com Publishing Guidelines.
Thomas Niel, contributor for InvestorPlace.com, has been writing single-stock analysis for web-based publications since 2016.