Rumor VELOU

Manning Family-Backed BBQGuys Reportedly in Talks With Velocity

, Bloomberg

BBQGuys, an online retailer of grills, outdoor kitchens and other accessories, is in talks to go public through a merger with Velocity Acquisition Corp., according to people with knowledge of the matter.

The combined company is set to be valued at around $900 million, including debt, the people said. Unlike some other recent special purpose acquisition company transactions, there will be no private investment in public equity raised to support the deal, they added.

Existing investors are set to roll their equity into the deal, the people said. BBQGuys’ majority owner is Brand Velocity Partners, and minority investors include a family of National Football League veterans: Archie Manning and his sons Eli Manning and Peyton Manning. Archie and Eli are in some of the company’s advertisements, its website shows.

Representatives for Velocity and Brand Velocity Partners declined to comment. A BBQGuys spokesman didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment.

BBQGuys, an e-commerce marketplace that stocks brands including Blaze, Weber, Traeger and Magma, has been profitable for decades, the people with knowledge of the matter said. Its revenue has risen at a compound annual growth rate of roughly 40% over the past 3 years to more than $250 million in 2020, the people said. Its earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization was over $30 million last year.

Velocity, led by Chief Executive Officer Adrian Covey and Chief Financial Officer Garrett Schreiber, raised $230 million in a February initial public offering. It’s one of three SPACs sponsored by operating platform &vest, which was co-founded by Doug Jacob. The first &vest SPAC agreed to merge with much of billionaire Tilman Fertitta’s Fertitta Entertainment Inc. empire.

Barbecue grill companies have been flocking to public markets. Weber this week filed for an IPO, following rival Traeger, which filed last week.

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