Recent Moves Have Digital Asset Platform Bakkt Valued at $2B+
Bakkt and VPC Impact Acquisition Holdings (NASDAQ: VIH), a special purpose acquisition company sponsored by Victory Park Capital, has entered into a definitive agreement for a business combination that will result in Bakkt becoming a publicly traded company with an enterprise value of approximately $2.1 billion. The combined company will be renamed Bakkt Holdings, Inc. and will be listed on the New York Stock Exchange.
Bakkt’s platform, soon to be made widely available through the new Bakkt App, will enable incremental consumer spending, reduce traditional payment costs and bolster loyalty programs, adding value for all key stakeholders within the payments and digital assets ecosystem. In building its platform, Bakkt leveraged ICE’s ability to create secure and regulated market infrastructure.
Leading Bakkt as CEO will be Gavin Michael, who served most recently as head of technology for Citi’s Global Consumer Bank and led the strategic planning, management and day-to-day operations of Citi’s global technology organization. He succeeds David Clifton, Bakkt’s interim CEO, who will join the combined company’s board of directors. Earlier in his career, Mr. Michael headed the digital team for Chase and served as chief technology innovation officer at Accenture.
“The average consumer holds a wealth of digital assets but rarely tracks their value and lacks the tools to manage and utilize them,” said Mr. Michael. “I’m excited to join the management team of a company, at this important time in its expansion, whose vision is to bring trust and transparency to digital assets through innovation and technology and, through that process, unlock trillions of dollars currently held in customer and loyalty accounts and allow consumers to put them to work.”
Victory Park Capital, a global investment firm headquartered in Chicago, has a long track record of executing debt and equity financing transactions with some of the largest global fintech companies. VPC Impact Acquisition Holdings completed its initial public offering in September 2020.
“With VPC Impact Acquisition Holdings, our aim was to identify a high-growth fintech company with competitive differentiation and significant white space, and we are pleased to have found a great match in Bakkt,” said John Martin, CEO of VPC Impact Acquisition Holdings. “The company has a strong position in one of the most well-funded and fastest growing areas of technological expansion, as evidenced by its diversified revenue generation model and pathway to near-term profitability. We thank Jeff, David and the ICE team for their vision and look forward to working with Gavin and the Bakkt team to grow its market-leading position in digital assets.”
Bakkt currently supports more than 30 loyalty program sponsors and 200-plus gift card merchants, and Starbucks has integrated Bakkt Cash as a payment method for customers to reload their Starbucks Card in the Starbucks app. The Bakkt App is currently available on an invite-only basis, with more than 400,000 consumers currently signed up for early access. Bakkt is planning for the widespread rollout of the app in March 2021. Before it is widely available, users from approved jurisdictions who would like early access to the Bakkt App may download it in the App Store or Google Play Store.