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It Isn’t Quite over for SPACs … Yet

Article-It Isn’t Quite over for SPACs … Yet

Image Credit: Dzmitry Dzemidovich via iStock / Getty Images IMG_2023-5-3-114756.jpg
Avertix, maker of an implantable heart attack warning system, is seeking to go public through a merger with Bios Acquisition Corp. The deal comes after special purpose acquisition corporation mergers have been in severe decline.

Special Purpose Acquisition Corporation mergers were all the rage at the beginning of the pandemic. However, the enthusiasm behind the measure, which is an alternative means of companies going public, “waned” in 2022.  In some cases, planned SPACs were canceled.

However, Avertix, a maker of an implantable heart attack warning system, announced it was undergoing a merger via a SPAC with Bios Acquisition Corp. The deal is at an enterprise value of $195 million and is expected to close in the second half of 2023.

Avertix, which was founded in 2001, has developed the Guardian System, an FDA-approved implantable patient-alerting system designed to warn patients to seek medical attention for acute coronary syndrome (ACS) events, including heart attacks.

The device was granted a transitional pass-through (TPT) payment category by Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, providing outpatient facilities with an incremental Medicare payment for procedures in which the Guardian System is used.

"With its ability to detect early signs of a heart attack and alert patients and healthcare providers, the Guardian System has the potential to transform the approach to cardiac care and improve patient quality of life and outcomes,” said Tim Moran, president and CEO of Avertix, who will lead the combined company upon closing of the Transaction. “We are thrilled to join forces with Bios to accelerate the commercialization, adoption, and continued development of the Guardian System. We look forward to leveraging BIOS’ expertise and resources to bring this critical technology to more patients worldwide."

The SPAC scene is much different in 2023. Pear Therapeutics, a company that develops prescription digital therapeutics (PDTs) to help treat substance use disorder and a poster child for the 2021 SPAC explosion, filed for bankruptcy in early April.

Better Therapeutics, another company in the PDT space, and another firm that went through a SPAC is having a rough go of it, too. The San Francisco, CA-based company said in March that it was cutting 35% of its workforce. Better Therapeutics is developing BT-001, a PDT that delivers a novel form of cognitive behavioral therapy to patients with uncontrolled type 2 diabetes. 

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