(Bloomberg) -- Tidjane Thiam’s blank check company has agreed to combine with solar company Complete Solaria, a rare recent deal of note for the troubled SPAC market.
Thiam’s Freedom Acquisition I has entered into a definitive business combination agreement with the newly formed US provider, according to a statement Monday. The combination will give Complete Solaria an equity value of about $888 million.
“Freedom has a global leadership team and a global set of investors, which will ensure that Complete Solaria can achieve its objectives in the US but also beyond, including in Europe where we believe the growth potential for residential and small business use of solar energy is enormous,” Thiam said in the statement. “This has only been made more obvious by the current energy crisis.”
Complete Solar Holding Corp. and Solaria Corp., two leading US residential solar companies, announced earlier today that they have agreed to merge and form Complete Solaria. Revenue of the combined firm is projected to reach $120 million in 2022, according to the statement.
Solar is among the big winners in the Inflation Reduction Act, the landmark climate bill that Joe Biden recently signed. There are tax credits for installations as well as for manufacturers -- part of the country’s effort to revive domestic panel-making, a sector long dominated by China.
Former Credit Suisse Group AG chief Thiam is executive chairman of the SPAC, which he set up last year. Its chief executive officer is Adam Gishen, who was Credit Suisse’s head of investor relations and communications during Thiam’s tenure. Thiam said in June that Freedom has looked at 75 potential targets since raising $345 million.
Read More: Thiam Says He Turned Down Offers After Credit Suisse for SPAC
Special purpose acquisition vehicles, generally known as blank check companies, pool funds to finance merger and acquisition opportunities. The market soared in 2020 as prominent investors, buyout shops and even celebrities drove interest, resulting in bigger IPOs and acquisitions.
The deal comes despite the broader SPAC market being hammered by a global investing rout and increased oversight from the US Securities and Exchange Commission. The regulator is proposing changes to the investment vehicle that some say may wipe out the industry.
The combination of Freedom and Complete Solaria is expected to complete next year and the resulting firm will be listed on the New York Stock Exchange. The deal is expected to provide gross proceeds of up to about $376 million, before the impact of potential redemptions by Freedom investors.
Bloomberg reported news of the deal earlier.
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