Ravi Thakran’s blank cheque firm Aspirational files for $225m US IPO

Ravi Thakran. Photo- Mint

Aspirational Consumer Lifestyle Corp, a Singapore-based blank cheque company launched by L Catterton Asia chairman emeritus Ravi Thakran, has filed for a $225-million initial public offering in the US, with plans to list on the New York Stock Exchange.

According to a filing, the special purpose acquisition company (SPAC) plans to raise $225 million by offering 22.5 million units at $10 apiece. Each unit consists of one share of common stock and one-third of a warrant, exercisable at $11.50.

The SPAC is led by CEO and Chairman Ravi Thakran, who is also the group chairman at LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton SA South/Southeast Asia and Australia/New Zealand.

L Catterton Asia has stakes in consumer lifestyle brands across Asia, including Melbourne’s athletic apparel brand 2XU, Taiwanese skincare brand Dr. Wu, and Singapore’s Crystal Jade restaurant chain. Its recent exits include China’s Marubi, a beauty company that was listed on the Shanghai Stock Exchange in July last year.

According to the SPAC, the proceeds of the listing will be used to pursue the company’s initial business combination target, although it clarifies that it has not selected any target at present.

“While we may pursue an initial business combination target in any industry or geographic location, we currently intend to concentrate our efforts in identifying businesses with premium brands that offer an aspirational lifestyle experience to consumers,” the company said in its prospectus.

“Our management team believes that its ability to expand global reach and penetrate new markets has been an essential driver of their past investment performance and will remain central to our differentiated acquisition strategy,” Aspirational Consumer Lifestyle Corp said.

Thakran has spent the last 20 years in various roles in the LVMH conglomerate, investing in Asian consumer brands and entrepreneurs. He founded L Capital Asia in 2009, the Asian private equity venture of LVMH. L Capital merged with Catterton in 2016 to form L Catterton. DealStreetAsia broke the news in May this year that Thakran was exiting from L Catterton Asia. He held dual roles of chairman and co-managing partner at L Catterton Asia, and group chairman at LVMH South and Southeast Asia, Australia, and the Middle East.

Thakran also served as a director on numerous public company boards, including SECOO China (Nasdaq: SECO), Future Lifestyle Fashions (NSE: FLFL), Mulsanne Group (HKSE: 1817), PVR Cinemas Ltd (NSE: PVR), and Clio Cosmetics Co Ltd (KOSDAQ: 237880), which together had an aggregate equity market capitalization of $2.4 billion as of June 30, 2020.

 

Singapore Reporter/s

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Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
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Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.