LanzaTech to go public in SPAC deal, valued at $2.2 billion

The Nasdaq logo is displayed at the Nasdaq Market site in Times Square in New York City, U.S., December 3, 2021. REUTERS/Jeenah Moon

March 8 (Reuters) - LanzaTech NZ Inc said on Tuesday it plans to go public by merging with special purpose acquisition company AMCI Acquisition Corp II (AMCI.O), in a deal that values the carbon recycling technology company at $2.2 billion.

The deal is expected to raise gross proceeds of nearly $275 million, comprising the $150 million AMCI raised in its IPO last year and a private investment in public equity of nearly $125 million from investors including ArcelorMittal and BASF (BASFn.DE).

Shares in the blank-check company, which said after raising money in August that it planned to focus on sustainability, decarbonization and energy transition, rose 1.55% to $9.85 in premarket trading.

A SPAC, or a blank-check company, typically sells shares at $10 apiece, puts the cash in a trust account, and then searches for a firm with which it can merge, taking it public in the process.

Dealmaking in the SPAC market has been stifled by tightening regulatory scrutiny and high investor redemptions, while a steep decline in shares of companies such as Grab Holdings Ltd and BuzzFeed Inc (BZFD.O) that went public through SPACs mergers has also soured sentiment.

Founded in 2005, Illinois-headquartered LanzaTech says it harnesses biology and data to create climate-safe materials and fuels, and also recycles carbon waste.

It spun out sustainable aviation fuel company LanzaJet in 2020, whose investors include All Nippon Airways, British Airways and the Microsoft Climate Innovation Fund.

The combined company will be led by LanzaTech Chief Executive Officer Jennifer Holmgren, an energy sector veteran.

The deal is likely to close in the third quarter of 2022 and the combined company is expected to trade on the Nasdaq under the symbol "LNZA".

Reporting by Mehnaz Yasmin in Bengaluru; Editing by Shinjini Ganguli and Vinay Dwivedi

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