DOOH EV Charging Network Volta Does Special Purpose Merger; Hopes To Raise $600M

February 8, 2021 by Dave Haynes

Volta Industries, which has a Digital OOH ad network built around electric vehicle charging stations, has announced plans for a merger with a special purpose acquisition company with hopes of generating $600 million for its network buildout.

The overall value of the deal is estimated to be $1.4 billion. The deal comes just three weeks since Volta announced a $125M raise.

Silicon Valley-based Volta says that upon closing of the transaction, the combined entity will be named Volta Inc. and remain on the NYSE under the new ticker symbol “VLTA.”

The pro forma equity value of the combined company is expected to exceed $2 billion at the $10.00 per share PIPE price and assuming minimal redemptions by Tortoise Acquisition Corp. II public shareholders. The funds will be used to further accelerate Volta’s efforts to continue to grow and unlock the value of its contract portfolio, as well as increasing its investment in product, engineering and network charging infrastructure. 

Anticipated net proceeds of approximately $600 million will be used to accelerate Volta’s buildout of its charging network already in the pipeline. This includes an upsized $300 million fully committed private placement of common stock in the combined company. The PIPE is anchored by institutional investors including funds and accounts managed by BlackRock, Fidelity Management & Research Company, LLC and Neuberger Berman Funds.

The pro forma enterprise value of the combined company is expected to be approximately $1.4 billion at the $10.00 per share PIPE price.

Here’s the company’s business proposition, which is a bit of a mouthful:

Unique to the EV market, Volta’s business model centers around evolving spending habits caused by the move to electric vehicles by building a charging infrastructure that reinforces desired behaviors at each location. Volta’s charging stations feature large eye-catching digital displays that function as a sophisticated media network, providing brands a way to reach millions of shoppers moments before they enter a store.

Translation: We hope consumers see and remember the ads, and ideally we can tie that to traffic or sales.

These sponsor-supported charging stations provide energy to customers who are able to plug in their vehicles where and when they shop. Volta’s business partners who choose to have Volta charging stations installed report an increase in spend, dwell time and engagement on site. Currently located in 23 states and over 200 municipalities, Volta’s approach has gained significant acceptance and penetration in the market. 

“Volta’s unique business model is poised to capture the vast consumer spending shifts that will accompany our society’s shift from carbon to electric,” said Scott Mercer, Founder and CEO of Volta. “With the shift to electric mobility, consumers will expect to fuel where they go.  Volta will anchor the infrastructure change, transforming fueling locations away from standalone gas stations to high traffic locations in the community where consumers live, work, and play.”

“We have looked for an opportunity where our capital could be the catalyst to unlock the full potential of a high-growth business with a market-leading position, and have drawn upon our expertise in the EV-space,” said Vince Cubbage, CEO and chairman of Tortoise Acquisition Corp. II. “Volta is a clear leader in EV infrastructure with exceptional unit economics and a truly differentiated business model. The visionary management team led by founder and CEO Scott Mercer, and co-founder and President Chris Wendel only reinforced our belief that Volta will be a leader.”

Peerless-AV has been building the EV charging station/display units for Volta, so CEO Nick Belcore and the sales/biz dev team are probably not sitting at their desks quietly singing I Don’t Like Mondays.

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