BarkBox holiday

BarkBox, an omnichannel brand for dogs, and Northern Star Acquisition Corp. have entered into a definitive merger agreement, officials reported in mid-December. As a result of the transaction, which officials value at about $1.6 billion, BarkBox will become a publicly listed company of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) under the new ticker symbol “BARK.”

BarkBox’s products are distributed directly to consumers via its BarkBox, Super Chewer and Bark Bright Dental subscriptions, and are available through Amazon as well as 23,000 retail locations including Petco, PetSmart, Target and Costco, among others, according to officials.

“The company’s omnichannel sales approach, data-driven platform and consistent customer engagement through direct contact and social media enable it to reach over 1 million active subscribers every month,” officials said in a statement.

Following the close of the transaction, Matt Meeker, co-founder of BarkBox, will continue to serve as executive chairman. Co-founder Henrik Werdelin will continue to lead design, content and product development, and co-founder Carly Strife will continue to lead strategic BarkBox initiatives, such as Bark Eats. Manish Joneja, CEO of BarkBox, will serve as CEO of the combined company.

Northern Star chairwoman and CEO Joanna Coles, a creative media and technology executive, and Jonathan Ledecky, president and COO, will join the combined company’s board of directors.

“We are thrilled to partner with Northern Star as we enter our next phase of growth,” Meeker said. “We started Bark because we are obsessed with making dogs and the people who love them happy. As a result of this merger, we will accelerate our ability to scale the Bark platform worldwide, add joy to the millions of dogs and families who love our products through our monthly subscription service, and grow our omnichannel distribution. We are energized by the numerous growth opportunities ahead, which include expanding our product offerings and experiences, enhancing our robust customer engagement platform though the use of artificial intelligence and creating lasting memories for dog lovers.”