Morpol obtained 21.1 million shares at EUR 2.32 a piece and 6 million at EUR 2.26, corresponding to 74.1 per cent of Marine Farms. (Photo: Morpol)
Morpol now owns 90.5 pct of Marine Farms
Friday, September 17, 2010, 23:50 (GMT + 9)
Norwegian salmon farmer Morpol ASA announced it has enlarged its stake in Marine Farms ASA to 90.5 per cent and will introduce a mandatory cash offer for the outstanding shares at NOK 18.50 (EUR 2.32) each.
Morpol raised its stake by obtaining 21.1 million shares at NOK 18.50 (EUR 2.32) apiece and 6 million shares at NOK 18 (EUR 2.26) each corresponding to 74.1 per cent of the shares in Marine Farms for NOK 499 million (EUR 62.7 million) in total.
Furthermore, Cermaq ASA informed it has sold its 43 per cent stake of 15.8 million shares in Marine Farms to Morpol for NOK 292 million (EUR 36.7 million), or NOK 18.50 (EUR 2.32) each. Cermaq now has no ownership in Marine Farms.
Cermaq believes Morpol can expand Marine Farms' activity in Scotland, and the divestment of the stake in that firm benefits Cermaq financially.
Lakeland, Marine Farms' Scottish subsidiary, has an estimated harvest of 12,000 tonnes of salmon for this year and wants to sell 14,000 tonnes next year.
After the recent acquisitions of Cermaq's farming and processing business Mainstream Scotland, plus that of local salmon farms Westray Salmon and Rysa Salmon, Morpol’s farming operation has the potential for a harvest of over 25,000 tonnes per annum.
Moreover, Morpol intends to hold the assets of Marine Farms' Spanish seabass/seabream business, belonging to Culmarex, and the company's cobia operations in Belize and Vietnam, for sale or a potential spin-off as a separate and listed company.
Founded in 1976, Marine Farms ASA’s operations mainly consist of salmon farming in the UK and seabass/seabream in Spain, activities which are run through the 100 per cent owned companies Lakeland and Culmarex, respectively. Marine Farms had a turnover of NOK 879 million (EUR 110.4 million) in 2009.
Lakeland, operating within the salmon farming industry since 1987, specialises in the vertically integrated farming of Atlantic salmon, producing it all the way from the broodfish through egg, fry, parr, smolt and fully grown salmon to the sale of gutted salmon and fresh fillets. The company’s hatchery business is the third largest party supplier of salmon ova and smolt to the UK and it has a production capacity of over 60 million ova and up to 10 million smolt.
Culmarex was founded in 1986 and produces species such as yellowtail and oysters. After being purchased by Marine Farms in 1990, Culmarex began focusing on seabass and seabream.
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By Natalia Real