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Fifth Wall SPAC Taking Parking Garage Owner Public

Parking garages have become an increasingly popular investment in New York City.

The SPAC boom might have gone bust, but the back door to the stock market is still open, and an owner of dozens of parking real estate assets is using it to go public.

Mobile Infrastructure Corp., which changed its name from The Parking REIT last year, has agreed to merge with one of proptech venture capital firm Fifth Wall's special-purpose acquisition companies, the companies announced Wednesday.

Mobile Infrastructure and Fifth Wall Acquisition Corp. III have agreed to a merger that would create a public company — listed on the New York Stock Exchange as "BEEP" — that would be valued at $550M. The merger is expected to close in the second quarter of 2023.

Mobile Infrastructure owns 15,750 parking spaces totaling 5.4M SF across 44 facilities in 22 markets, as well as 200K SF of commercial space adjacent to the parking sites.

Fifth Wall, fresh off closing an $866M funding round, was forced to withdraw its second SPAC, the $150M Fifth Wall Acquisition Corp. II, in March after failing to identify an acquisition target, The Real Deal reported. Its first SPAC merged with SmartRent, which sells smart building technology to landlords, at a $2.2B valuation in 2021.

SmartRent has lost nearly 80% of its value this year and now has a market capitalization below $500M. Its fortunes mirror most SPAC deals consummated last year when the craze was in full effect: Companies that went public via SPAC lost an average of 72.2% of their value since 2018, according to PitchBook data

FWAC III raised $275M from investors, which will be transferred to the merged firm at closing. No Street Capital, an existing Mobile Infrastructure shareholder, has agreed to an additional $10M investment as part of the merger agreement.

Upon closing, Mobile Infrastructure will become the largest publicly traded parking owner, according to the companies' press release.