Griddle maker Blackstone the latest with plans for SPAC-based stock market debut - The Entrepreneurial Way with A.I.


Monday, December 27, 2021

Griddle maker Blackstone the latest with plans for SPAC-based stock market debut


Dive Brief:

  • Adding to the year's spate of SPAC-enabled IPOs, outdoor griddle brand Blackstone said Thursday it plans to go public via an acquisition by blank-check company Ackrell SPAC Partners I Co., according to a press release from the companies. Blackstone would trade on the Nasdaq under the ticker symbol BLKS.

  • The transaction implies a combined company pro forma enterprise value of $900 million, per the release. Blackstone expects "private investment in public equity" of $31 million of common stock and $111 million in bonds "from several institutional investors led by FS Investments."

  • Blackstone and Ackrell have a definitive business combination agreement, expected to close in the second quarter of 2022, "subject to the satisfaction or waiver of certain closing conditions," Ackrell shareholder approval, and certain notices from the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Nasdaq, the companies said.

Dive Insight:

This griddle company is stoked about a corner of the outdoor cooking market it says it carved out and dominates, though it remains to be seen whether it's ready for the searing level of scrutiny found in the public markets. Founder and CEO Roger Dahle was bold enough to describe the griddle category as "emerging and explosive," which is good as long as the context is dollar signs.

"Blackstone created the market of at-home outdoor griddle cooking, commanding 80% of the U.S. market share with strong category growth," the company said in its release, noting it has five new product lines in development. "Blackstone is an enthusiast brand with a passionate and engaged customer base featuring one of the largest social media communities in the industry."

Dahle said the company expects to continue to gain share, presumably by helping to expand the market, and sees promise in the role of social media.

"We have ignited a massive social media movement supported by our loyal customers that will further propel our brand awareness," Dahle said in a statement. "There is a massive whitespace opportunity for griddles and we believe Ackrell is the perfect partner to help us achieve our mission – to make outdoor cooking accessible to all, for every meal."

Blackstone estimates it will have notched over $450 million in revenue this year and expects that to top $600 million next year. The company also noted, with little elaboration, a "proven track record of profitable growth," though its focus is on its revenues, including a 72% net revenue compound annual growth rate from 2016 through 2020.


Daphne Howland, Khareem Sudlow