Blue Star acquires Gault Seafood, continuing RAS acquisition streak
Miami, Florida, U.S.A.-based Blue Star Foods has continued to expand its stake in the aquaculture industry with its acquisition of Gault Seafood.
Beaufort, South Carolina, U.S.A.-based Gault, which has been in operation for 20 years, employs recirculatory aquaculture systems (RAS) to harvest Atlantic blue crab during for sale when wild-caught crab is not in season.
In July, Blue Star completed the acquisition of Taste of BC Aquafarms, an RAS salmon farming operation in Nanaimo, British Columbia, Canada. Taste of BC Aquafarms recently chose Deep Bay, British Columbia, Canada as the location for its new RAS steelhead farm.
Blue Star also recently closed a USD 4 million (EUR 3.5 million) public offering. The net proceeds of the offering, according to a Securities and Exchange Commission filing by Blue Star, were approximately USD 3.6 million (EUR 3.2 million) after deducting the underwriting discount, underwriters’ fees and expenses, and the company’s estimated offering expenses.
Blue Star Senior Project Manager Rodrigo Mezerhane said in a press release that the Gault acquisition will Blue Star to “establish a whole new market that does not exist today.”
“The Gault Seafood team has developed a special RAS technology that will allow us to modify the molting cycle of the Atlantic blue crab and therefore be able to harvest them in the offseason,” Mezerhane said. "The existing crab season starts in March in Louisiana, and moves slightly northward every couple of weeks until you hit September in New Jersey. Outside of this window, it’s almost impossible to get any of this product and bring it to the North American market.”
The Gault Seafood acquisition follows Blue Star’s merger and acquisition strategy of acquiring “new innovative technologies, or companies where we can layer in our sustainable resource management model, or that diversifies our offering of marine protein species,” Blue Star Chairman and CEO John Keeler said.
The acquisition of Gault, conducted via a combination of cash and equity, is expected to close in the first quarter of 2022.
Photo courtesy of Blue Star Foods