The IPO Buzz: Taiwan-Focused SPAC Up 2 Percent in February 1st Debut

First IPO out of the gate in February is a Taiwan-focused SPAC. Cetus Capital Acquisition Corp. (CETUU) started trading at 10:45 a.m. EST today –Wednesday, Feb. 1, 2023 – at $10.13, up 1.3 percent from its $10.00-per-unit IPO price, NASDAQ records show. Volume on that opening trade: 165,968 shares. By 11:54 a.m. EST, Cetus Capital Acquisition’s stock was up 1.9 percent at $10.19 – just a penny below its session high of $10.20 – on volume of 2,145,991 shares. At the close, Cetus Capital was at $10.18 – up 18 cents or 1.8 percent for its first day of trading. Cetus Capital Acquisition’s strong debut is a ray of sunshine in the gloomy skies of the SPAC universe. E.F. Hutton was the sole book-runner. Meanwhile, Wall Street’s attention was focused on two things: (1) The Fed, as expected, raised the fed funds rate today by 25 basis points, which continued the slower pace that began at its December meeting – and (2) the year’s first big biotech IPO. Structure Therapeutics Inc. (GPCR proposed) is set to price its $125.3 million IPO on Thursday night (Feb. 2, 2023) for a Friday (Feb. 3, 2023) debut on the NASDAQ. Jefferies, SVB Leerink, Guggenheim Securities and BMO Capital Markets are the joint book-runners of Structure Therapeutics’ IPO. 

Two micro-cap IPOs with ties to Asia – Lichen China (LICN proposed) and Lead Real Estate Co., Ltd. (LRE proposed) – are playing the NASDAQ waiting game. The word on the Street is that Lichen China has been momentarily delayed; some see the Chinese financial and tax service provider’s IPO pricing tonight, while others think it’s more likely that this deal will get priced next week. Wall Street pros say that Lead Real Estate Co. Ltd., a Tokyo-based developer of luxury single-family homes and condominiums in Japan and Dallas, may price its IPO tonight. Others see Lead Real Estate’s IPO pricing as more likely tomorrow night to trade Friday (Feb. 3).

When the Size Is Right

Size matters. And sometimes small is just right. Cetus Capital Acquisition’s IPO was small – just 5.0 million units at $10.00 each to raise $50.0 million – priced on Tuesday night, Jan. 31, 2023, in sync with the terms in its prospectus. The SPAC IPO was downsized from 6.0 million units, according to an S-1/A filing on Jan. 19, 2023.  Each unit consists of one share of Class A common stock, one warrant to buy one share of Class A common stock, and one right to receive one-sixth (1/6) of one share of common stock upon consummation of Cetus Capital Acquisition’s initial business combination.

In the IPO log book, Cetus Capital Acquisition goes down as the last deal priced in January 2023. But the stats for Cetus Capital Acquisition’s IPO belong to February due to the deal’s trade date on Feb. 1, 2023. The only other SPAC IPO priced so far this year is Israel Acquisitions Corp. (ISRLU).

Taiwan’s industrial and IT companies are on Cetus Capital Acquisition’s shopping list.

“We intend to focus our search for a target business in the industrials, information technology and Internet-of-Things industries with an intention to initially prioritize Taiwan, and we will not consider or undertake a business combination with an entity or business that is based in, or has its principal business operations in, the People’s Republic of China, including Hong Kong and Macau,” the prospectus says.

Chung-Yi Sun, CEO, president and chairman of the board of Cetus Capital Acquisition, is a managing director of AWinner Limited, an investment firm focused on breakthrough information technology companies, the prospectus says. Sun also has served since June 2010 as an assistant vice president of Lite-On Green Technologies, Inc., a Taiwan-based green technology company. He has more than 20 years of experience in the high technology, energy and automobile industries. 

Cheng-Nan Wu, CFO, secretary, treasurer and a director nominee of Cetus Capital Acquisition, has served since February 2019 as the general manager assistant for overall planning of financial systems and financial strategic planning at Hotai Motor Co., Ltd., a Taiwan-based and publicly listed company that is principally engaged in the distribution of motor vehicles and relevant parts. 

A Promising January

A slight warming trend ran through the IPO market in January. The successful IPOs of Skyward Specialty Insurance (SKWD) and TXO Energy Partners, L.P. (TXO) gave IPO investors  reasons to hope that 2023 may be a better year than the shellshock of 2022. Bankers priced 10 deals in January 2023 – seven IPOs, one tiny uplisting – public offering and two SPAC IPOs – to raise about $492 million.

The pipeline was the place to look for encouragement. Eight companies filed plans to go public in January via traditional IPOs with estimated IPO proceeds of $100 million each. Big investment banks began to slide back onto the IPO dance floor.

Stay tuned.

(For more information about these companies, please check the IPO Calendar and the individual IPO Profiles found on’s website.)

Note: Never trade on proposed symbols. They have been known to change and you might buy something on the OTC Bulletin Board. 

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Disclosure: Nobody on the staff has a position in any stocks mentioned above, nor do they trade or invest in IPOs. The staff does not issue advice, recommendations or opinions.

Disclaimer: A SCOOP Rating (Wall Street Consensus of Opening-day Premiums) is a general consensus taken, at press time, from Wall Street and investment professionals concerning how well an IPO might perform when it starts trading. The SCOOP Rating does not reflect the opinions of anyone associated with The SCOOP ratings should not be taken as investment advice. The rating merely reflects the opinion of the professionals at the time of publication and is subject to last-minute changes due to market conditions, changes in a specific offering and other factors, such as changes in the proposed offering terms and the shifting of investor interest in the IPO. The information offered is taken from sources we believe to be reliable, but we cannot guarantee the accuracy.