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Blockchain payment company Roxe to go public via $3.6 billion SPAC deal

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·2 min read
FILE PHOTO: IIlustration shows representations of virtual cryptocurrencies on U.S. Dollar banknotes
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By Echo Wang

(Reuters) -Blank check company Goldenstone Acquisition Ltd said late on Tuesday that it has entered into a deal with blockchain-based payments company Roxe Holding Inc to take it public for a combined enterprise value of about $3.6 billion.

The deal bucks an unfavorable market environment with cryptocurrencies plunging in value and investors largely losing interest in special purpose acquisition companies (SPACs) of this sort partly because of disappointing returns.

Reuters had earlier reported about the deal, citing people familiar with the matter. None of the Roxe investors plan to sell their stakes, according to the sources.

Roxe stockholders will roll 100% of their equity into the combined company and certain stockholders are entitled to an earnout for additional shares in the combined entity if certain stock price targets are met, Goldenstone said in a statement.

Goldenstone raised just $57.5 million in its initial public offering in March this year, a slither of the deal's value.

Founded in 2019, Roxe connects banks, payment firms and remittance companies, facilitating cross-border payments using their private blockchain tokens. It does not use cryptocurrencies, whose market value has been volatile.

Bitcoin fell below $20,000 on June 18 for the first time since December 2020. It has plummeted around 60% this year. The overall crypto market has slumped to around $900 billion, down from a record $3 trillion in November. [L1N2Y503U]

This would be Roxe's founder Haohan Xu's second SPAC merger this year after he agreed to take crypto exchange Apifiny public earlier this year in a $530 million deal.

About 600 SPACs that went public in the past couple of years are still trying to complete deals, according to data from Dealogic. A little over six months into 2022, 26 SPAC mergers have been terminated in the United States, according to data from industry tracker Spac Research. That compares with a total of 18 in the whole of 2021, and 7 in 2020.

Upon closing of the transaction, Goldenstone will be renamed as Roxe Holding Group Inc and listed on the Nasdaq.

(Reporting by Echo Wang in New York; Additional reporting by Maria Ponnezhath in Bengaluru; Editing by Howard Goller and Shailesh Kuber)