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Pear Therapeutics to go public in a $1.6 billion SPAC transaction to expand its DTx offering

Pear Therapeutics announced plans to go public by merging with Thimble Point Acquisition Corp. in a $1.6 billion special purpose acquisition company (SPAC). The company said the move is expected to facilitate commercialisation and expansion.

According to the announcement, the newly merged company will operate under the name Pear Holding Corp and will be listed on Nasdaq. Pear’s executive management will continue to lead the new combined entity. 

Pear Holding Corp’s capital now includes just over US$276 million from the Thimble Point trust account and US$125 million of private investments in public funds, following the merger.

The transaction is expected to close in the second half of 2021.

According to Pear, the new SPAC agreement will provide the company with the funding it needs to expand its commercialization efforts for its FDA-cleared products and help it pursue new products.

Dr. Corey McCann, Pear’s president and CEO, explained in the statement how Pear is “at a commercial inflection point,” highlighting the company’s potential for rapid expansion in the sphere. The merger will indeed enable the widespread use of PDTs to treat major medical conditions and tackle significant barriers to patient care, he concluded.

Founded in 2013, Pear Therapeutics has quickly gained traction for its PDTs. Last March, the company closed a $100 million Series D funding round that helped it secure reimbursements for its products.

The Boston-based Dtx company is already planning major therapeutics offerings soon, including a new PDT for schizophrenia that was recently trialled. Even if, back in January, Novartis released the results of a 112-person clinical trial that showed no difference between the Pear application and a placebo application in any outcome measurements. With McCann saying at the time that the study was “disappointing” and that there were “methodological issues” not mentioned in the study.

Nevertheless, Pear has already established itself as a pioneer in the space, having received FDA approval for its ReSET prescription digital therapeutic (PDT) for substance abuse disorder in 2017, before approving two more PDTs, one for opioid abuse disorder and the other for insomnia. While, in April, the company signed a series of agreements to incorporate more digital biomarkers and a digital pill into its platform.

SPACs have grown in popularity over the past year, with more than 80 percent of digital health startups who announced a public exit in 2021 opting for this exit option. These include 23andMe, Hims & Hers, Valo, Babylon, Science 37, Better Therapeutics, Owlet, Clover, and Butterfly Network, all of which have gone through a SPAC merger.

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