Bowling center operator Bowlero Corp to go public in $2.6bn SPAC deal

Bowlero Corp, a New York-based bowling center operator, has agreed to merge with Isos Acquisition Corporation, a special acquisition company (SPAC) in a deal that values the combined company at around $2.6 billion.

The merger enables the bowling center operator to become a publicly listed company, which is expected to trade on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) under the ticker symbol – BOWL.

Bowlero operates nearly 300 bowling centers across North America. In the 12 months ending February 2020, more than 26 million guests are said to have bowled on Bowlero’s 12,000 plus bowling lanes.

The company’s brands include Bowlero, AMF, and Bowlmor Lanes. In 2019, the bowling center operator acquired the Professional Bowlers Association, a bowling league with thousands of members and millions of fans around the world.

Bowling center operator Bowlero Corp to go public in $2.6bn SPAC deal

Bowling center operator Bowlero Corp to go public in $2.6bn SPAC deal. Photo courtesy of TenPinGeek/Wikipedia.org.

Tom Shannon – Founder, Chairman and CEO of Bowlero said: “Starting with the purchase of the original Bowlmor Lanes in 1997 and its conversion into a Manhattan hotspot, we’ve been revolutionizing the bowling industry, and we’re just getting started.

“With our acquisition of the Professional Bowlers Association (PBA) and partnership with FOX Sports, we intend to continue to reenergize the PBA and bring the sport to millions of fans. This transaction will allow us to further expand the Bowlero ecosystem which covers leisure, media and gaming.”

The merger is backed by a private investment in public equity (PIPE) of $450 million. The PIPE investors include funds managed by affiliates of Apollo Global Management, Soros Fund Management, Brigade Capital Management, The Donerail Group, and Wells Fargo Asset Management.

George Barrios and Michelle Wilson – Co-CEOs of Isos Acquisition Corporation said: “We view this business combination as highly strategic with committed capital that gives Bowlero even more financial flexibility to execute on organic and inorganic growth plans. We look forward to joining the Bowlero Board and driving shareholder value with the combined experience and network of our two teams.”

The deal, which is subject to Isos Acquisition Corporation’s shareholders and other conditions, is anticipated to close in October 2021.

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