Welcome to Lux Recommends #255, this week’s edition of what we at Lux are reading and thinking about (want to receive this by email? Sign up here).
By Peter Hébert
Unless you’ve been hiding under a rock over the past year or perhaps docked at the International Space Station, it’s been impossible to miss the Special Purpose Acquisition Company (SPAC) craze that has overtaken Wall Street.
This year alone, as of October 30, 169 SPAC IPOs have raised a total of $59.5B, compared to $13.5B raised by 59 SPAC IPOs in all of 2019. For perspective, the 169 SPACs raised in the first 10 months of the year nearly match the 172 raised from 2015–2019.
Typical late inning behavior amid a massive asset bubble, right? Well, not exactly. A product whose sullied reputation decades ago would have made even a stockbroker in a Long Island strip mall blush is evolving…and improving, rapidly. …
In the words ahead we ask and answer whether this moment is the most important in history, share how we are seizing on current market conditions, offer our optimistic and cautioned case for what may happen next — and end with our certainty for the very long-term.
Last quarter we noted how unprecedented was the widespread use of the word “unprecedented”. This quarter we query whether we are — as some say — at the most important and influential moment of all time: a “hinge of history.”
We pose the question not to be provocative but rather to be prescriptive, as the answer should inform with moral imperative how we ought to spend our most important asset: time. In preview, we hold the minority view that this moment in time is not — in the context of all that has ever happened and all yet to happen — uniquely special, even with all the evident chaos. Instead there are directional arrows of positive progress, technological inevitabilities, and ever more and new options created by the agency and ambition of the scientific and technical founders we fund. From any moment in the present, they are always setting up a perpetually more promising future. …
Welcome to Lux Recommends #254, this week’s edition of what we at Lux are reading and thinking about (want to receive this by email? Sign up here).
The gut trains the immune system to protect the brain: “These data provide more compelling evidence that the brain is protected by immune cells that are educated in the gut.” — Adam G
A Pinnacle of Coral Is Discovered in Australia’s Great Barrier Reef: “The underwater skyscraper teems with sea life and had been overlooked in past surveys of the reef system.” — Zack
Welcome to Lux Recommends #253, this week’s edition of what we at Lux are reading and thinking about (want to receive this by email? Sign up here).
Can lab-grown brains become conscious? “A handful of experiments are raising questions about whether clumps of cells and disembodied brains could be sentient, and how scientists would know if they were.” — Sam
The Messy, Booming Business of Recycling Cruise Ships: “Thanks to the pandemic, the practice of breaking apart ships and selling them for parts is on the rise.” — Peter
Welcome to Lux Recommends #252, this week’s edition of what we at Lux are reading and thinking about (want to receive this by email? Sign up here).
Doctors May Have Found Secretive New Organs in the Center of Your Head: “They appear to be a fourth pair of large salivary glands, tucked into the space where the nasal cavity meets the throat.” — Adam K
The Family Feud Behind a $32 Million T. Rex Named Stan: “The two rock-star fossil-hunter brothers who dug up the most expensive dinosaur fossil in the world had been locked in a legal battle for years” — Adam…
By Peter Hébert and Josh Wolfe
At Lux, taking a contrarian view of the impossible is our daily bread. We are comfortable with the uncomfortable and tenacious believers in the unbelievable, grounded in the work of the rebel scientists, technologists, and inventors creating an inevitable future others may relegate to science fiction.
We recognize that the future takes time to build, so we invest over the long term in our own team to partner with and match the resilience, dedication, and passion of the founders we fund. …
By Peter Hébert & Josh Wolfe
We’re pleased to unveil Lux’s newest investment vehicle, Lux Health Tech Acquisition Corp., a $345M special purpose acquisition company, which begins trading on the Nasdaq [LUXAU] this morning. We formed Lux Health Tech for the purpose of entering into a merger, capital stock exchange, asset acquisition, stock purchase, reorganization or similar business combination with one or more businesses at the intersection of the healthcare and technology industries. In plain speak: we believe the time is now to take public and build generational technology companies that will have a profound positive impact on healthcare.
Our partners in this endeavor include long-standing public market collaborators (i.e. multi-billion-dollar fundamental hedge funds and crossover investors), as well as many of our own Limited Partners. Lux is not only sponsoring the acquisition vehicle, but our funds will also commit fresh capital to invest alongside the business combination. We and our partners see this as an extremely attractive investment opportunity at the outset of a secular shift in technology and healthcare. …
Welcome to Lux Recommends #251, this week’s edition of what we at Lux are reading and thinking about (want to receive this by email? Sign up here).
How a downed internet balloon produced an unlikely love story: “Google’s Loon balloons have been hailed as the future of connectivity, but in Uruguay, they’ve been most effective for matchmaking.” — Deena
Welcome to Lux Recommends #250, this week’s edition of what we at Lux are reading and thinking about (want to receive this by email? Sign up here).
Get Ready for the Great Urban Comeback: “Visionary responses to catastrophes have changed city life for the better.” …