Plant-based packaging-maker Footprint going public via $1.6 billion SPAC

FootprintTroy Swope, Co-Founder and CEO of Footprint, an Arizona-based materials science technology company known for its plant-based packaging, will make its market debut by merging with blank-check firm Gores Holdings VIII. The deal is expected to value Footprint, ranked No. 45 on this year’s CNBC Disruptor 50 list, at $1.6 billion following the SPAC merger’s completion.

SPACs — or special purpose acquisition companies — raise capital from public markets and use that cash to merge with a private company, with the goal of taking the company public within a two-year period. There was an explosion in SPAC deals earlier this year, but there are indications the space is cooling down. Still, valuations have gained as money managers are also increasingly factoring in ESG policies in their investments.

Founded in 2014 by two former Intel engineers, Footprint develops and manufactures alternative solutions to single- and short-term-use plastic. Its sustainable products are designed with the entire product lifecycle in mind, and are made from 100% bio-based, biodegradable, compostable and recyclable fibers. That not only reduces unnecessary waste from entering the environment, but it also reduces exposure to toxic chemicals found in plastic.
Troy Swope, Co-founder and CEO of Footprint is part of the advisory board for the Rethinking Materials summit 2022.