Pershing Square Tontine Holdings, the special purpose acquisition company run by the billionaire hedge-fund investor Bill Ackman, got sued this morning in a novel case that could have far-reaching implications for the SPAC industry.
The case, which is being argued by Robert Jackson, a former S.E.C. commissioner, and John Morley, a law professor at Yale, contends that Ackman’s SPAC isn’t an operating company, but is actually an investment company like Ackman’s funds, which should be regulated by the Investment Company Act of 1940. If certain SPACs were regulated as investment companies, much of the industry could be affected because it would make it harder for anyone in the investment business to participate in a SPAC.
‘Enforcement 40’ for 2020
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