Startup With Critical Technology For Self-Driving Cars To Go Public

Luminar Technologies, which makes lidar sensors for self-driving cars, will go public via a merger with blank check company Gores Metropoulos (GMHI), after fellow lidar maker Velodyne agreed to merge with Graf Industrial (GRAF).

The Luminar deal includes $400 million of cash from Gores Metropoulos and $170 million financing by heavyweight investors including Peter Thiel, Volvo Cars Tech Fund and VectoIQ. The latter helped Nikola (NKLA) go public via a blank-check company, a company set up to specifically take another company public.

The Luminar deal has an enterprise value of about $2.9 billion and an equity value of $3.4 billion.

The combined company will keep the name Luminar Technologies and trade on the Nasdaq under the ticker LAZR. The deal should close in the fourth quarter.

Last month, Graf Industrial said it’s acquiring Ford (F)-backed Velodyne Lidar, with the combined company to trade under the ticker VLDR.