(Bloomberg) -- Equinox, whose gyms are frequented by Wall Street staffers among others, is in talks to go public through a merger with Ares Acquisition Corp. after talks with one of Chamath Palihapitiya’s blank-check companies collapsed, according to people with knowledge of the matter.
Deliberations are ongoing and may not result in a transaction, the people said, asking not to be identified discussing private information. The valuation couldn’t be learned.
Representatives for Ares and Equinox declined to comment.
Ares Acquisition raised $1 billion in its February initial public offering. It is backed by Ares Management Corp., an alternative asset manager. A co-founder of Ares Management, David Kaplan, is the SPAC’s co-chairman and chief executive officer.
Equinox held talks with Palihapitiya’s Social Capital Hedosophia Holdings Corp. VI earlier this year. That deal could have valued Equinox at more than $7.5 billion including debt, a person with knowledge of the matter said at the time.
In February 2020, Equinox struck a funding deal with private equity firm Silver Lake to build out its digital platform. Consumer-focused buyout firm L Catterton also owns a minority stake in the gym operator. Equinox also operates brands including SoulCycle, Rumble and Blink Fitness.
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