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Magnum Opus Acquisition Limited (OPA) Brings Binance into Forbes PIPE
by Nicholas Alan Clayton on 2022-02-10 at 9:19am

Magnum Opus (NYSE:OPA) announced this morning that crypto exchange Binance has taken the place of existing PIPE investors in committing $200 million to its combination with financial publication Forbes.

The net amount of Forbes PIPE is unchanged at $400 million, but the parties created a new subscription agreement allowing Binance to appoint two members to the company’s post-transaction Board. Binance will be sending its Chief Communications Officer Patrick Hillmann and Bill Chin, head of its venture capital arm, to the Board.

Under current market conditions, some SPACs have struggled to hold together financing packages for their deals or find replacement funds without onerous terms. From that perspective, for Magnum Opus to be able to bring in $200 million for the same initial terms of its PIPE at announcement (at $10.00 per share) for the price of just two Board spots is a big win.

The deal includes a $400 million minimum cash condition, and this funding allows Magnum Opus to keep that covered by the PIPE at a time when redemption rates are high.

It is also potentially a big win for Binance, which appears to have jumped at an opportunity to gain a stake in the mainstream financial coverage of crypto markets. The full scope of the partnership is yet to be seen, but the Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao said in the release that he looks forward to bolstering Forbes’ digital initiatives and investment insights platform.

He further noted that, “As Web 3 and blockchain technologies move forward and the crypto market comes of age we know that media is an essential element to build widespread consumer understanding and education.”

Binance is the largest crypto exchange by volume by a significant margin with about $16 billion traded on the platform over the last 24 hours as compared with $3 billion on Coinbase (NASDAQ:COIN). But, it has also faced disruption over the past year as a large base of its operations and consumers were in China, which effectively banned the platform in October. A strategic partnership with Forbes could potentially serve as a useful play as it re-orients itself towards North American and European markets.

Magnum Opus has not yet set a date for its completion vote, but the terms of the PIPE agreement have also set the transaction’s completion deadline at March 31. The parties initially announced the $685 million deal on August 26. Jersey City, New Jersey-based Forbes operates a media group including wholly-owned and licensed publications and manages branded invents internationally.

 

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