Wednesday, August 10, 2022

Autonomous Truck Startup Plus and Hennessy Capital Investment call of planned SPAC Merger

Self-driving truck developer Plus and Hennessy Capital Investment Corp. V announced that they have mutually agreed to terminate their previously announced merger agreement and plan of reorganization. With that the planned SPAC merger will not take place.

Plus cited “recent developments in the regulatory environment outside of the U.S.” and said it is considering restructuring “certain aspects of its business.” The company said it remained open to future discussions with Hennessy Capital about a potential business combination.

“Plus has achieved tremendous momentum in executing against our plans to bring autonomous trucks to market globally,” stated David Liu, co-founder and CEO of Plus. “In 2021, we started delivery of our driver-in autonomous driving solution, PlusDrive, to customers and received thousands of pre-orders.”

“We also completed a fully driverless truck demo on a highway that showcased the future of trucking,” he said. “We are grateful for the support we have received from the Hennessy team, whose commitment to sustainable commercial transportation technologies we share.”

Plus Driverless Level 4 Truck Presentation

Special-purpose acquisition company (SPAC) Hennessy Capital (HCIC V) raised $345 million in its initial public offering (IPO) in January 2021 and is listed on the Nasdaq Capital Market as “HCIC.” Nov. 8 was the “outside date” in the original merger agreement for canceling the deal with Plus.

“HCIC was formed to merge with a company that provides sustainable technologies,” said Daniel J. Hennessy, chairman and CEO of HCIC V. “We believe in the potential for autonomous trucks to transform the trucking industry and in Plus’s ability to continue its global deployment of autonomous trucking technology. We remain optimistic that the parties can once again explore a business combination in the near term that will further advance sustainable transportation.”

The merger would have yielded about $500 million in gross proceeds at closing, bringing Plus’ valuation to approximately $3.3 billion. The company had previously raised $420 million in February.

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