Profand deal for Mercadona’s Caladero plant will widen product mix to salmon, whitefish

Spain’s Profand Fishing Holding has moved to acquire Spanish retail group Mercadona’s processing firm Caladero, after buying Stavis Seafoods and investing in Seafreeze in the US.

Zaragoza, Spain-based Caladero will add a new range of species Profand’s portfolio. Caladero processes salmon, trout, seabream and seabass, as well as sardines, in addition to octopus, squid and shrimp Profand is known for.

Vigo, Spain-based Profand agreed to buy 100% of Caladero, which specializes in products in modified atmosphere packaging MAP) trays for Mercadona, which took control of the plant in 2010 after it ran into difficulties under Carlos Amoros, its former owner. The plan at the time was to eventually find an industry buyer such as Profand, which is the main supplier of cephalopods to the retailer.

The deal, which is pending approval by the Spanish competition authority, will allow Profand to “boost its growth and consolidate its leadership in Spain in both volume and efficiency and productivity”, the company said.

The MAP-focused Caladero plant in Zaragoza has 55,000 square meters of production area with a capacity total of 21,000 metric tons of product per year, employing some 600 staff.

Caladero will add €200 million ($222.50m) and a net profit of €3.4m to Profand’s growing business. When Undercurrent News revealed Profand’s move for Seafreeze, done in partnership with Michael Tourkistas, the founder of US shellfish processor East Coast Seafood Group, it emerged the deal would take the company past $500m. So, the addition of Caladero will make the wider Profand group to around $720m in annual sales.

“This is a strategically important transaction both for Profand and for the Spanish seafood industry as a whole. The sector was deeply affected by the 2008/09 financial crisis and this transaction is recognition of the fabulous recovery the sector experienced,” Ignacio Kleiman, founding partner of Antarctica Advisors, told Undercurrent News.

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Antarctica Advisors Acts as Exclusive Investment Banking Advisor to Bristol Bay Native Corporation in its Acquisition of Blue North Fisheries and Clipper Seafoods

October 1, 2019Antarctica Advisors LLC, the leading Seafood Industry-focused M&A advisory firm, acted as the exclusive investment banking advisor to Bristol Bay Native Corporation (“BBNC”) in its acquisition of a controlling participation in Blue North Fisheries and Clipper Seafoods, the two leading operators in the freezer longline cod sector in Alaska.

Jason Metrokin, President and CEO of BBNC commented: “The Alaska fisheries are an integral part of our shareholder’s lives and our acquisition of these two leading operators in the Pacific cod sector represented a unique opportunity for our group to enter the strategically important seafood industry.  The Seafood M&A Team at Antarctica Advisors provided BBNC management and board of directors with valuable industry expertise and execution capability which was integral to the successful completion of this complex transaction.

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Bristol Bay Native Corporation To Acquire Blue North Fisheries and Clipper Seafoods

Bristol Bay Native Corporation (BBNC) is pleased to announce the pending acquisition of Blue North Fisheries and Clipper Seafoods, two leading operators in the sustainably-managed freezer longline cod sector of the Bering Sea fishery. Effective September 30th, this acquisition will put BBNC, an Alaska Native corporation with deep cultural ties to fishing, in a position to bring Bering Sea earnings home to Alaska, benefiting its 10,000 shareholders as well as the local economy.

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Pacific cod merger closes; BBNC deal set for start of October

The US’ two largest Pacific cod longline companies have officially merged, sources confirmed to Undercurrent News.

A deal between Clipper Seafoods and Blue North, which received the go-ahead from the US Department of Justice earlier this week, closed at 12:01 a.m. Friday, Sept. 13, sources said.

However, an investment in the company from the Bristol Bay Native Corporation (BBNC), which plans to take a 75% stake in the newly merged Blue North Clipper will take a few more weeks and will likely close at the beginning of October, sources added.

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Seafood Executive Outlook 2019: Investment, optimism and a lot more M&A

Our exclusive survey of over 300 top seafood executives gives guidance to where the industry is headed. Download it now!

Seafood executives are in an optimistic space right now, with many saying they expect higher revenues, more M&A activity and more investment in infrastructure and new product development in the coming year.

That’s according to results of an exclusive email survey IntraFishconducted with over 300 top global seafood industry executives earlier this year. The survey’s findings were revealed during the IntraFish Leadership Breakfast during Seafood Expo North America in Boston in March.

DOWNLOAD THE FULL SURVEY HERE! (pdf)

The survey respondents represented various sectors of the seafood industry, but largely self-identified as being in the aquaculture, processing, wholesaling and distribution sectors.

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Could Blackstone go fishing for deals with new $22bn-plus fund?

The Blackstone Group has just raised more than $22 billion from investors for its latest private equity fund. With this mountain of money could the US-based buyout giant look at seafood mergers and acquisitions (M&A)?

Given the increased private equity appetite for seafood M&A, maybe, according to Undercurrent News sources. Blackstone — the world’s largest asset manager with $472bn on its books — completed the first close of its eighth private equity in March, according to Bloomberg News. However, Blackstone has not yet set a limit on the investment pool, which it ultimately expects to eclipse the $24.56bn fund record set by fellow buyout behemoth Apollo Global Management in 2017, which has $249bn under management, reported Bloomberg.

Blackstone has been eyeing deals in the sector before. Back in 2015, Undercurrent revealed Blackstone made a bid for the Peruvian anchovy assets of China Fishery Group, along with industry players Parlevliet & Van der Plas (P&P) and Samherji.

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Nine big seafood M&A moves to watch for in 2019

By Jason Huffman, Tom Seaman and Jason Smith

The seafood industry has a fever and the only thing that will cool it down in 2019 is more consolidation.

To say there were a lot of mergers and acquisitions in 2018 would be an understatement. Undercurrent News has identified 127 deals, up from 117 in 2017 and 102 in 2016. The fourth quarter of 2018 alone saw 42 deals, the most since we started tracking in January 2015. The joint second-highest quarter for deals was Q3 of last year when we recorded 34, the same as in Q4 of 2017.

These deals include quite a few big ones in multiple sectors, from salmon aquaculture in Chile to fishing firms, processors, wholesalers and exporters in Europe, the US, Canada, and Asia. But the global M&A party is not nearly over based on the conditions, as suggested by Ignacio Kleiman, a managing partner at Antarctica Advisors, in Miami, Florida, in an earlier interview.

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M&A Advisor: More US firms need to be looking to secure resources overseas

Undercurrent News – August 22, 2018

North American companies need to be more aggressively seeking access to raw material resources overseas, believes Birgir Brynjolfsson of Antarctica Advisors.

Speaking to Undercurrent News, Brynjolfsson – who worked as the exclusive advisor to Mitsui & Co on its March 2018 deal for Mark Foods – noted there is a perception that US companies in the seafood sector are interested in looking overseas for expansion.

“But what we’ve seen is that there are so many opportunities within North America that there is no need for the companies to start looking overseas.”

“We get a lot of inbound communications from advisors in Asia and Latin America asking ‘hey, we’ve got this opportunity, are you guys interested?’ And our recommendation is that the North American companies have not been aggressively going abroad acquiring the right resources.”

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Sources: Iberconsa, Pescanova an ‘ideal match’; management would prefer PE

The likely upcoming sale process for Portobello Capital’s stake in Grupo Iberica de Congelados (Ibercosa) will attract a lot of trade and private equity interest, with the Madrid, Spain-based  private equity (PE) investor in a strong position, said one banker.

According to one source, Gorjan Nikolik of Rabobank, investors should look at unifying Ibercosa and Grupo Nueva Pescanova. However, Nikolik acknowledged the issues with a move like this. Other sources said this is not likely to be a move the management of Ibercosa is likely to want to see, at least in the short-term.

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