New SPAC to target real estate startups

Southport Acquisition Corp. led by Ellie Mae vet Jeb Spencer

Southport Acquisition Corp. CEO Jeb Spencer (TVC Capital, iStock)
Southport Acquisition Corp. CEO Jeb Spencer (TVC Capital, iStock)

A new blank check company is entering the SPAC space, setting its sights on financial software startups focused on mortgage and real estate.

Southport Acquisition Corp. priced an initial public offering on Friday. Inman reported the company is offering 20 million units at $10 each, hoping to raise more than $234 million; that’s dependent on BofA Securities exercising a 45-day option to purchase an additional 3 million units.

An investor prospectus from Southport reveals more about what the company has planned.

The company aims to partner with a promising mortgage or real estate startup. The prospectus says the company is on the lookout for “a leading financial services software or FinTech partner, with particular focus on mortgage and real estate software verticals, that generates between $50 million and $100 million of revenues and is valued between $1 billion and $2 billion.”

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Southport Acquisition Corp. counts financial software industry veterans among its management team. The company CEO is Jeb Spencer, co-founder and managing partner of TVC Capital. He also served on the board of directors of Ellie Mae from 2011 to 2019, according to Inman; the mortgage technology firm was acquired by Intercontinental Exchange in 2020 for $11.4 billion.

Members of the company’s board of directors include SimpleNexus CEO Cathleen Schreiner Gates, Ellie Mae co-founder Sig Anderman and Baseball Hall of Famer Dave Winfield.

This year has seen blank-check companies pull in billions of dollars. The sector saw new heights of activity last year with 248 firms going public, raising $83 billion, according to SPACInsider.

The proptech space has fielded mergers and acquisitions. Through the end of August, proptech M&As totaled more than $18 billion for the year, putting it on pace to exceed the $21.9 billion transacted in the space in 2020.

[Inman] — Holden Walter-Warner