Digital publisher Forbes and Magnum Opus Acquisition Limited received a $200 million investment from cryptocurrency exchange Binance.
- Forbes is looking to list on the New York Stock Exchange through a merger with Magnum Opus, which is a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC), under the ticker symbol “FRBS."
- The publisher will use the funds to accelerate its digital growth, the company said in a press release on Thursday.
- Forbes is the publisher behind the iconic magazine of the same name and the annual list which ranks the world's richest people.
- Binance will assume half of the $400 million commitments from institutional investors, which was announced in August, effectively making it one of the two biggest owners of the publication.
- Patrick Hillmann, chief communications officer at Binance, and Bill Chin, head of Binance Labs, will join the Forbes board upon the closure of the combined transaction, which is expected in the first quarter.
- “As Web 3 and blockchain technologies move forward and the crypto market comes of age we know that media is an essential element to build widespread consumer understanding and education. We look forward to bolstering Forbes’ Digital initiatives, as they evolve into a next level investment insights platform,” said Changpeng "CZ" Zhao, founder and CEO of Binance.
- Binance sued Forbes in 2020 for defamation after the news outlet published leaked documents purporting to outline the exchange's plans for reentering the U.S. market. The so-called "Tai Chi/" documents laid out a web of corporations and subsidiaries that would allow Binance to generate revenue without directly operating in the U.S. The plan outlined in the documents appeared similar to the actual structure employed by Binance.US, the U.S.-based affiliate of Binance.
- The exchange dropped the lawsuit in 2021.
- CNBC had earlier reported that Binance was looking to make a $200 million strategic investment in Forbes.
UPDATE (Feb. 10, 13:57 UTC): Updates the story with deal confirmation and statement from Zhao.
UPDATE (Feb. 10, 15:55 UTC): Adds details of Binance's lawsuit against Forbes.
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