SoFi nears deal to go public with SPAC backed by venture capital investor Palihapitiya, sources say – CNBC

Anthony Noto, CEO of SoFi 

Adam Jeffery | CNBC

Online lending startup Social Finance (SoFi) is nearing a deal to go public through a merger with Social Capital Hedosophia Holdings Corp V, a blank-check acquisition company led by venture capital investor Chamath Palihapitiya, people familiar with the matter said on Thursday.

The deal would value SoFi at more than $6 billion and could be announced in the coming days, the sources said, cautioning that the talks could still collapse and the terms could be changed.

The sources requested anonymity because the negotiations are confidential. SoFi and Social Capital did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Social Capital Hedosophia V is one of three so-called special purpose acquisition companies (SPACs) backed by U.S. investor Palihapitiya and London-based Ian Osborne that are currently looking for acquisitions.

A SPAC is a shell company that raises money in an initial public offering (IPO) to merge with a privately held company that then becomes publicly traded as a result.

They have emerged as a popular IPO alternative for companies, providing a path to going public with less regulatory scrutiny and more certainty over the valuation that will be attained and funds that will be raised.

Palihapitiya has been one of the most prolific sponsors of SPACs, merging them with a range of companies, from space tourism firm Virgin Galactic to home-selling platform Opendoor.

Social Capital Hedosophia V raised around $800 million in an IPO on the New York
Source…