More SPAC Action: Tech Company Using Gravity to Store Energy Inks $1.6 Billion Deal

Harri Weber

Harri is dot.LA's senior finance reporter. She previously worked for Gizmodo, Fast Company, VentureBeat and Flipboard. Find her on Twitter and send tips on L.A. startups and venture capital to harrison@dot.la.

More SPAC Action: Tech Company Using Gravity to Store Energy Inks $1.6 Billion Deal

Energy Vault, a startup that uses gravity and composite blocks heavier than a school bus to store renewable energy, plans to go public in a $1.6 billion merger with a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC).

The combined entity — consisting of the Westlake Village, Calif.-based clean energy startup and a shell company called Novus Capital Corp. II — aims to list on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker "GWHR." The companies expect the deal to close during the first quarter of 2022.


Energy Vault's tech was developed to help utilities "solve the problem of power intermittency that is inherent with wind and solar energy generation," said Robert Piconi, the clean energy company's CEO and co-founder in an announcement of the deal.

In its search for a business to take public, Novus CEO Robert Laikin said the blank-check firm "looked at over 100 companies."

Earlier this year, another SPAC set up by Laikin took AppHarvest public. The firm builds gigantic greenhouses and was at one point valued at $1 billion. AppHarvest's market cap currently hovers around $770 million.

These mergers are part of a larger trend that has drawn scrutiny from regulators, shareholders and lawmakers alike. Sen. John Kennedy introduced a bill earlier this year that would force SPACs to be more transparent with investors. "It's right and fair that a SPAC should disclose how its sponsors get paid and how that affects the value of its public shares," the Senator argued. "The Sponsor Promote and Compensation Act would require this kind of transparency," he added.

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LA Tech ‘Moves’: Adtech Firm OpenX Lures New SVP, Getlabs and DISQO Tap New VPs

Decerry Donato

Decerry Donato is dot.LA's Editorial Fellow. Prior to that, she was an editorial intern at the company. Decerry received her bachelor's degree in literary journalism from the University of California, Irvine. She continues to write stories to inform the community about issues or events that take place in the L.A. area. On the weekends, she can be found hiking in the Angeles National forest or sifting through racks at your local thrift store.

LA Tech ‘Moves’: Adtech Firm OpenX Lures New SVP, Getlabs and DISQO Tap New VPs
Photo by James Opas | Modified by Joshua Letona

“Moves,” our roundup of job changes in L.A. tech, is presented by Interchange.LA, dot.LA's recruiting and career platform connecting Southern California's most exciting companies with top tech talent. Create a free Interchange.LA profile here—and if you're looking for ways to supercharge your recruiting efforts, find out more about Interchange.LA's white-glove recruiting service by emailing Sharmineh O’Farrill Lewis (sharmineh@dot.la). Please send job changes and personnel moves to moves@dot.la.

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This Week in ‘Raises’: Miracle Miles Lands $100M, Fintech Startup Tapcheck Hauls $20M

Decerry Donato

Decerry Donato is dot.LA's Editorial Fellow. Prior to that, she was an editorial intern at the company. Decerry received her bachelor's degree in literary journalism from the University of California, Irvine. She continues to write stories to inform the community about issues or events that take place in the L.A. area. On the weekends, she can be found hiking in the Angeles National forest or sifting through racks at your local thrift store.

This Week in ‘Raises’: Miracle Miles Lands $100M, Fintech Startup Tapcheck Hauls $20M
Image by Joshua Letona

In this week’s edition of “Raises”: An L.A.-based footwear company closed $100 million to boost its expansion into the global market, while there were Series A raises for local fintech, biotech and space startups.

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