News Alternative Lending shares plummet after Nasdaq debut

The Trussle-owner made headlines last year when its CEO fired hundreds of employees over Zoom

Vishal Garg

Scott Rosenthal/CC BY-SA 4.0

Two years after first sharing plans to go public, completed a long-delayed SPAC merger and saw shares immediately plummet as it started trading as a public company.

The mortgage lending company, which owns fintech Trussle, saw shares drop by more than 93 per cent when it completed its SPAC merger.

Backed by SoftBank, the company made headlines after CEO Vishal Garg abruptly fired 900 employees in the US and India over Zoom in December 2021.

Following the incident, Garg took a break from the company, stepping back as CEO and returning in January 2022.

Better saw tremendous growth during the pandemic, but has since seen a slump, posting a first-quarter loss of $89.9m in July.

Profits took a blow as high mortgage rates led to a decreased demand for home loans.

Since May 2021 the company has been trying to complete a merger, but the slow process took two years, rather than two months, with Garg describing the journey as “arduous” to the Financial Times.

Better completed the combination with Aurora Acquisition Corp, which went public in March 2021.

Shares in the newly merged entity finished the session at $1.15, down by 93.4 per cent.

Following the merger, SoftBank will capitalise the company with an additional $550m, Garg told Reuters, which it will use to expand its offering of mortgage products.

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