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Griddle Maker Blackstone Products Joins Rush of Grill Firms in Going Public

Blackstone Products, a griddle maker with a large social-media following, joins a bunch of grill makers in going public.
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Blackstone Products, a maker of griddles that has a large following on social media, is going public through a SPAC merger, following in the footsteps of outdoor-grill makers Weber  (WEBR) - Get Free Report and Traeger  (COOK) , which went public this year. 

Blackstone Products will merge with special-purpose-acquisition company Ackrell SPAC Partners ACKIU. 

Consumers' interest in cooking at home during the pandemic partly explains the rush of companies in the space going public, The Wall Street Journal reports. The paper noted that Solo Brands  (DTC) , owner of the Solo Stove outdoor fire-pit brand, has also gone public.

The SPAC merger values Blackstone Products at about $780 million. The company expects to receive as much as $281 million in gross transaction proceeds from the deal.  

As part of the deal, Blackstone Products is raising $142 million in a private investment in public equity, featuring $31 million in equity investments and $111 million in convertible bonds. Investors include FS Investments of Philadelphia.

"Blackstone is a pioneer" in the griddle category within the outdoor cooking space, Roger Dahle, founder and chief executive of Blackstone Products, said in a statement.

The company, which launched its first product -- a 36-inch griddle -- in 2008, says annual revenue grew 72% compounded from 2016 through 2020. It estimates $450 million of revenue for 2021 and more than $600 million in 2022. 

Blackstone Products "has deep long-term relationships with key retailers, including Walmart  (WMT) - Get Free Report, Lowe's  (LOW) - Get Free Report and Amazon  (AMZN) - Get Free Report, [complemented by] direct-to-consumer sales," the Logan, Utah, company said in a statement.

The transaction is expected to close in the second quarter, with Blackstone Products being listed on the Nasdaq under the ticker symbol BLKS.

The company plans to expand its product line and premium offerings, Dahle said.

"We have ignited a massive social-media movement supported by our loyal customers that will further propel our brand awareness," the executive said.