Kevin Mayer, Tom Staggs, Shaquille O’Neal Join Forces for Media-Focused Acquisition Group

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Forest Road Acquisition aims to raise $250 million for media and tech acquisitions

Tom Scaggs, Kevin Mayer, Shaquille O'Neal

Former NBA star Shaquille O’Neal has joined former Disney executives Kevin Mayer and Tom Staggs to create Forest Road Acquisition Corp., a SPAC investment vehicle with the goal of raising $250 million for media and technology acquisitions. According to a filing with the SEC, Mayer will serve as a strategic adviser, Staggs will be director and chairman of the Strategic Advisory Committe and Salil Mehta, another former Disney executive, will serve as chief financial officer. O’Neal will also be a strategic adviser, as will producer Mark Burg. Martin Luther King III will be a director. The special-purpose acquisition company (or SPAC) plans to raise $250 million for acquisitions in the technology, media, and telecommunications sectors. SPACs, occasionally referred to as “blank check companies,” are shell companies designed to allow investors to pool capital to fund mergers or acquisitions with the intention of finding opportunities after establishing the company. They typically serve as a way for individual investors to participate in actions normally reserved for professional investment companies. According to the Wall Street Journal, there has been a rise in the creation of SPACs as a result of economic uncertainty due to the COVID-19 pandemic that has made traditional investment firms more cautious. “We believe that our team’s distinguished and long-term track record of sourcing, acquiring, and building next-generation media and entertainment platforms, along with other investments and operational experience in consumer-facing industries, will provide us with differentiated consumer insights and sourcing opportunities,” the company said in its SEC filing. Staggs is a former COO of Disney, while Mayer was most recently at Tik Tok, where he quit after four months on the job.

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