Gilbert sustainable packaging company Footprint reaches deal to go public

Dec 14, 2021, 12:23 PM | Updated: 12:28 pm

Footprint Center...

(Footprint Photo)

(Footprint Photo)

PHOENIX – Footprint, the Gilbert company with naming rights to the Phoenix Suns’ arena, announced Tuesday that it’s agreed to become a publicly traded company through a merger.

The materials science business, which specializes in sustainable food packaging made from plant-based fibers, expects to be listed on NASDAQ as FOOT when the deal is finalized.

“Our mission is to create a healthier planet and step one is to design, develop and manufacture plant-based fiber solutions as an alternative to single-use plastics,” Troy Swope, Footprint co-founder and CEO, said in a press release.

“Today marks an exciting inflection point in our seven-year history inventing new materials that challenge the status quo.”

The company, which entered a multiyear naming rights deal with the Suns for Footprint Center in downtown Phoenix in July, will merge with Gores Holdings VIII.

The resulting company is projected to have a total enterprise value of $1.6 billion, according to the release. The deal, which is subject to the approval of Gores Holdings VIII’s stockholders, is expected to close in the first half next year.

Gores Holdings VIII is a special purpose acquisition company, aka a blank check company, formed by an affiliate of The Gores Group and taken public in March.

Footprint was founded in 2014 by Swope and Yoke Chung, former Intel engineers. It has more than $500 million of annual revenue contracted with customers such as Kraft, McDonald’s, Procter & Gamble and Walmart, according to the release.

The company has its headquarters near Germann and Gilbert roads and employs more than 2,500 people in the U.S., Mexico, Europe and Asia.

“Footprint offers game-changing materials science solutions that are the gold standard in the industry as the world transitions to plastic alternatives,” Mark Stone, The Gores Group senior managing director and Gores Holdings VIII CEO, said in the release.

“Partnering with a market leader making a meaningful impact on the health of our planet aligns perfectly with the sustainability component of our investment strategy, and we are thrilled to support the Footprint team as it executes its proven strategy to drive continued growth and innovation.”

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Gilbert sustainable packaging company Footprint reaches deal to go public