Golden Age Of Merger Arb: ironSource

Aug. 12, 2022 10:00 AM ETironSource Ltd. (IS)APP, ASLE, SPAK, TWTR, U24 Comments


  • An enormous spread.
  • A shaky interloper.
  • Another for the arb basket.
  • Looking for a helping hand in the market? Members of Sifting the World get exclusive ideas and guidance to navigate any climate. Learn More »

Ironsource mobile advertising company office facade in Silicon Valley

Michael Vi

Merger Arbitrage

Here's one more for the Golden Age of Merger Arb basket. My favorite of the bunch remains Twitter (TWTR).

Graphical user interface, text, application, chat or text message Description automatically generated


And my favorite way to play that remains buying calls, specifically June 2023 TWTR $47 calls. They traded at $2.25 when I first offered the idea, $4.20 when I reiterated it, and are still worth buying at $4.75 today. If the deal closes on original terms, they will be worth $7.20 for a better than 50% return. How long will this take? Probably wrapped up by year-end or so.


ironSource (NYSE:IS) is a business platform to support app developers and telecom operators.

A screenshot of a computer screen Description automatically generated with low confidence



Unity (U) signed a definitive agreement to buy ironSource for 0.1089 U shares per IS. The deal is subject to approvals by both sets of shareholders, as well as regulatory approvals in the US and Israel. Israel needs to grant Registrar and ISA/.ITA clearances.

Text Description automatically generated



The deal will probably close by year-end.

Text Description automatically generated



ironSource is located in Tel Aviv, Israel, and does business internationally.


The $1.41 net spread offers a 78% IRR if the deal closes by January 2023.

Text Description automatically generated



AppLovin (APP) made a non-binding offer for Unity conditioned upon their terminating this deal. Unity abandoning their current deal for that one is the biggest deal risk for IS. Additionally, IS's history has not been a happy one for shareholders; it has been yet another disappointing de-SPACed equity. They have almost all been terrible. One convenient way to just short the whole lot of them is via Defiance NextGen SPAC IPO ETF (SPAK). I thought it was a strong sell last year.

Graphical user interface, text, application Description automatically generated


I think the same this year. Exceptions are few and far between (and fewer than I thought over the past few years… I was 90% skeptical, but should have been 99%). One of the vanishingly few exceptions remain AerSale (ASLE).

Graphical user interface, text, application, chat or text message Description automatically generated


It was a huge opportunity in its IPO at $10 (even setting aside the value of the free warrants) and has since doubled to $20. I expect it to double once more after their AerAware engineered product hits the market.

AerAware is my favorite one [proprietary engineered solutions]. I love it… We are very close to certification on it. We have a number of customers big and small… It is something we believe will be ubiquitous to the airlines industry… We expect margins in excess of 50% on engineered solutions.

- AerSale CEO, Nick Finazzo


Unity has strong corporate defenses and is unlikely to be successfully acquired on a non-consensual basis. They have a large voting agreement in favor of the current deal. The unsolicited bidder didn't offer much of a premium and their shares reacted poorly to the offer, which constrains their ability to aggressively bump the bid. Further constraining the hostile bidder, they have a smaller market cap than their target. They are reliant on the unusual route of making a hostile bid with all stock, which has less scope to work. For those reasons, the best bet here is on ironSource.

A screenshot of a computer Description automatically generated



Buy IS.*

*Is this the shortest TL; DR ever?

Line Up

My best ideas are always first on Sifting the World where members get real time updates, price alerts, and live discussion.  Next in line, newsletter subscribers get a more limited access to some of my ideas.  Please consider joining or subscribing today.

This article was written by

Chris DeMuth Jr. profile picture
Value, arbitrage, and event driven top performing ideas
Chris DeMuth Jr ( founded event driven hedge fund Rangeley Capital LLC and research service Sifting the World

    #1 ranked arbitrage service
    #1 ranked event driven service
    #1 ranked M&A service

Read the reviews 
  Subscribe to the newsletter
    Become a member

Disclosure: I/we have a beneficial long position in the shares of IS, TWTR, ASLE either through stock ownership, options, or other derivatives. I wrote this article myself, and it expresses my own opinions. I am not receiving compensation for it (other than from Seeking Alpha). I have no business relationship with any company whose stock is mentioned in this article.

Additional disclosure:

Recommended For You

Comments (24)

To ensure this doesn’t happen in the future, please enable Javascript and cookies in your browser.
Is this happening to you frequently? Please report it on our feedback forum.
If you have an ad-blocker enabled you may be blocked from proceeding. Please disable your ad-blocker and refresh.