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M&A monitor

Countries compete with the US for listings

As US SPACs scour the world for targets, other countries are scrambling to compete with New York as a venue for SPAC flotations. 

There is now investor interest in SPAC IPOs in London, given that Lord Hill's recommendations for the reform of UK listing rules could be implemented later this year. (The new rules would mean SPACs would not potentially have trading in their shares suspended when an acquisition is announced.)

A number of SPACs have listed in Amsterdam, with more reportedly on the way. Frankfurt, too, is looking to gain a foothold, with German venture capitalist Klaus Hommels working with Deutsche Boerse to develop a competitive SPAC structure that he hopes will allow European companies to retain their identity and local investors to benefit from domestic innovation. (We compare the basic features of SPACs listed in Amsterdam, Frankfurt and London with their US equivalents here). Similar discussions are under way in Asia, where Indonesia’s stock exchange recently announced it was following Seoul’s Kosdaq, Hong Kong and Singapore in considering whether to allow SPAC IPOs.