That’s at least strange! Or a game-changer! The leading but highly disputed crypto exchange Binance will make a $200 million investment in Forbes, the media company announces, as it prepares to go public via a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC). This transaction is reminiscent of the New Economy at the peak of the internet hype in 2000 when the Internet startup AOL acquired the Time Warner media group. It was a sign to many that the old economy was being taken over by the Internet and tech companies. Now crypto is taking on the world and resets it on the blockchain!
The new ruler of the world?
The Chinese-Canadian Changpeng Zhao established Binance in 2017. It is the largest exchange in the world in terms of daily trading volume. In 2021 Binance was under investigation by the U.S. Department of Justice and Internal Revenue Service on allegations of money laundering and tax offenses. The UK’s Financial Conduct Authority ordered Binance to stop all regulated activity in the United Kingdom in June 2021. In February 2018, Forbes Magazine placed Changepeng Zhao third on their list of “The Richest People In Cryptocurrency” at an estimated $1.1-2 billion. According to Bloomberg Billionaires Index, his net worth is estimated at $96 billion as of January 23, 2022, making him the richest person in Canada & the world’s 14th richest person.
The game-changing transaction
The Binance investment is taking place as part of a financing round in which Forbes seeks to raise $400M and go public. In August 2021, Forbes announced that Forbes Global Media Holdings Inc. and Magnum Opus Acquisition Limited (NYSE: OPA), a publicly-traded special purpose acquisition company (SPAC), signed an agreement through which Forbes would become a publicly-traded company on the New York Stock Exchange trading under the ticker symbol “FRBS.” Forbes claims to reach more than 150 million people worldwide, which would be a powerful news machine for crypto and Binance.
Binance subscribes for $200M, making it the second-largest shareholder after Hong Kong’s Integrated Whale Media, which bought 95 percent of Forbes shares for $475 million in 2014. Binance will also get two seats on Forbes’ board of directors. One is to be given to current communications chief Patrick Hillmann, and the other to Bill Chin, the head of Binance Labs.
Forbes and Magnum Opus earlier announced plans to pursue a business combination, expected to close Q1 of 2022, through which Forbes would become a publicly-traded company on the New York Stock Exchange trading under the ticker symbol “FRBS.”