AquaChile seeks financial restructure, USD 245 million capital increase
Chile’s largest salmon farmer, AquaChile, has called an extraordinary shareholders meeting for 29 October to vote on a USD 245 million (EUR 208 million) capital increase and to realign the financial structure to incorporate companies acquired in 2018.
Chile’s salmon sector saw significant consolidation in 2018, with national food giant Agrosuper buying 67 percent of AquaChile in an USD 850 million (EUR 771 million) deal. The same day that deal was announced, AquaChile acquired Salmones Magallanes and Pesquera Eden for USD 255 million (EUR 231 million); Weeks previous to that, Agrosuper purchased Friosur through its salmon farmer Los Fiordos.
The extraordinary meeting will call for shareholders to approve the capital increase and the contribution, assignment, and transfer of voting rights of Pesquera Los Fiordos Limitada from Agrosuper to AquaChile.
The move would be in agreement with the report from independent auditor, EY Chile, whereby Agrosuper would pay the capital increase via the contribution of the shares that it currently has in Pesquera Los Fiordos Limitada.
According to the independent auditor, the proposed restructuring would have Agrosuper consolidate its salmon sector investments via AquaChile, "with the corporate and management efficiencies that come with it." While all other companies under AquaChile report in U.S. dollars, Los Fiordos reports in Chilean pesos. Bringing Los Fiordos into the fold would standardize the accounting and financial information, avoiding any exchange rate difference and “avoiding management duplication in the accounting and obtaining of relevant data, which will now be fully dollarized,” according to the EY Chile report.
AquaChile produced a reported 218,000 metric tons (MT) of salmon in 2019, second worldwide to Mowi at nearly 436,000 MT. Just a year ago, the Chilean salmon farmer wrapped up a USD 21 million (EUR 19.1 million) expansion of its Quellón salmon processing plant, giving it an annual production capacity of 140,000 MT, which it said makes the facility the world’s largest and most modern.
Photo courtesy of AquaChile