Chinese seafood firms continue to seek diversification away from seafood

Published on
February 22, 2018

Even as China’s demand for seafood soars, a growing trend of diversification away from the industry is emerging amidst the country’s leading seafood firms.

Leading tilapia firm Baiyang Investment Group has announced its investing another CNY 84.2 million (USD 13.3 million, EUR 10.7 million) for full ownership of an education company in which it invested last year. Baiyang has taken full ownership of Huo Xing Shi Dai (also known as Mars Era Digital Arts), a firm running a chain of private academies teaching digital arts courses. Several years ago, the company changed its listed name from Baiyang Aquatic Group to reflect what it said was an attempt to diversify its activities. 

This follows an attempt from another leading Chinese seafood firm to change its name – yet again – to reflect the fact that it foresees an increasing share of its profits coming from new interests in online gaming. Dalian Yi Qiao Sea Cucumber Co., Ltd., formerly Dalian Yi Qiao Marine Seeds Co., Ltd is a long-time supplier of seeds for various seafood species, as well as being a cultivator and distributor of sea cucumbers. The company got a boost to its share prices when it previously changed its listed name, as investors were drawn to the potential of earnings in the high-priced sea cucumber space. 

The firm’s latest effort to change its name – to Chen Xin Zhi Neng (the name’s literal translation into English is “Morning Prosperity Intelligence”) – appears to have been called off in late December after criticism from numerous stock analysts, who argued that the move was aimed at boosting share price from exposure to an IT sector currently trendy with investors, without reflecting the contribution of seafood to its earnings.  

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