Irish-led Nextdoor to go public via $4.3bn Spac merger

Chief executive Sarah Friar, who hails from Co Tyrone, was previously CFO at Square

Nextdoor, a San Francisco social network company led by Irish woman Sarah Friar, is to go public through a merger with a blank-cheque company in a deal valued at $4.3 billion (€3.6 billion).

The deal with special purpose acquisition company (Spac) Khosla Ventures Acquisition Co II includes a private investment of $270 million from Baron Capital Group, accounts advised by T Rowe Price Associates and Cathie Wood's Ark Invest.

Ms Frier and existing investors Tiger Global and Hedosophia are also funding the deal, which will generate proceeds of about $686 million for the combined company.

Nextdoor would use the money for hiring and expanding into new territories, it said.



Ms Friar, who comes from Sion Mills, Co Tyrone, was formerly chief financial officer at payments company Square, which was founded by Twitter chief executive Jack Dorsey.

She joined Nextdoor at the end of 2018 after spending six years at Square, during which time she helped steer the company as it went public in late 2015.

Launched in the United States in 2011, Nextdoor allows members to seek advice from their neighbours on anything from babysitters to organising local sports clubs.

The start-up was valued at more than $2 billion after its funding round in September 2019, according to media reports. The platform is used in more than 275,000 neighbourhoods around the world and by nearly one in three US households.

The company has an Irish-focused website and also established a Dublin-based company in October 2016.

Following the merger, founding investor Bill Gurley, Ms Friar and Nextdoor's co-founders will each contribute a portion of their personal ownership in the start-up to form Nextdoor Kind Foundation, a non-profit to invest in neighbourhoods, the company said.


A Spac is a shell company that seeks to merge with a private company and in the process takes it public. Spac mergers gained popularity last year, but are experiencing a slowdown due to weak investor appetite and greater regulatory scrutiny.

The merger is expected to close in the fourth quarter this year, after which the merged entity will be listed under the ticker symbol “Kind”.

Khosla Ventures Acquisition Co II raised $400 million in its IPO in March. – Additional reporting: Reuters

Charlie Taylor

Charlie Taylor

Charlie Taylor is a former Irish Times business journalist