HomeToGo distribution channel set to go public via $ 1.2 billion SPAC

Germany: HomeToGo, a Berlin-based vacation rental distribution chain, announced it has signed a non-binding letter of intent to go public through a merger with a blank check company or special purpose acquisition company [SPAC], Lakestar SPAC I, owned by venture capital firm Lakestar.

In a joint statement, the companies said they “will continue to be in mutually exclusive negotiations with the aim of reaching a binding business combination agreement in due course.”

The proposed deal is believed to value HomeToGo at around $ 1.2 billion [€1 billion] but negotiations are still ongoing.

Should the transaction be successful, it is claimed that HomeToGo co-founders, Patrick Andrae [also CEO] and Wolfgang Heigl, would remain in their current posts.

HomeToGo’s metasearch engine helps users find and compare listings based on their preferred locations, travel dates, budget and amenities and book their vacations, enabling travelers to book and plan their vacations on one website.

The company recently released a white paper with short-term rental data and analytics provider AirDNA on the growing trend of ‘revenge travel’, in which it analyzed the sentiment and plans of travelers for l summer 2021 and beyond in the United States.

The report highlighted the continued popularity of domestic and rural destinations, with nine in ten travelers seeking rural getaways to the United States this year and 63% of customers surveyed stating that a “quiet getaway” was their next vacation destination. favorite vacation. HomeToGo also revealed that 46% of its US summer bookings in April lasted seven days or more, an 8% increase from the previous year.

HomeToGo joins a growing number of companies rushing to join the SPAC game, after hosting company Sonder announced its merger in April, while private travel club Inspirato is said to be in talks over a potential deal. It was also revealed that Airbnb had rejected the opportunity to merge with a PSPC owned by billionaire investor Bill Ackman when it was approached before the company went public in December.

PSPCs are seen by some people as a faster route to public markets, as they can sell shares on the stock exchange before they have up to 36 months to find other companies to merge with.

In February, Lakestar PSPC raised $ 335 million [€275 million] as part of an IPO to merge with a start-up European technology company.

HomeToGo’s last round of funding came in December 2018, when it raised $ 150 million and acquired its biggest competitor in the United States, Tripping.com. According to Crunchbase, the company has raised $ 176.7 million to date since it was funded seven years ago.

HomeToGo also announced the acquisition of travel planning startup Mapify for an undisclosed amount, another company in which Lakestar had previously invested.

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