Interatlantic, Cabomar sole bidders for Fandicosta after WOFCO withdraws

Fandicosta's processing plant.

The number of companies competing to acquire Fandicosta has been whittled down to two.

Interatlantic and Cabomar remain the sole bidders for the Domaio, Pontevedra, Spain-based seafood supplier, which completed a pre-bankruptcy filing in October 2023. Its ownership group entered Fandicosta into a sale process earlier this year. Worldwide Fishing Company (WOFCO) previously announced its interest in acquiring Fandicosta but withdrew its offer prior to the close of the bidding process at the end of December, according to Atlantico.

The sale process was postponed to at least 4 January due to “technical reasons,” with Atlantico reporting no sufficient offers had been received by the bidding deadline. As a result, Fandicosta’s ownership is pushing for an extension of the sale negotiation period, which would entail an extension of its pre-bankruptcy filing that shielded the company from creditor claims for a three-month period ending 13 January. 

The Galician government, which owns 12 percent of Fandicosta, has said it hopes to sell all of Fandicosta’s assets – including processing facilities in Moaña and two in Vigo, collectively – in order to ensure the takeover plan is feasible and guarantees future employment for the company’s 330 employees.

Fandicosta and Atunlo, which also recently entered pre-bankruptcy proceedings, recently received EUR 27 million (USD 29.6 million) in public financing to help ease their liquidity issues, according to Economía Digital Galicia.

Fandicosta is Spain’s fifth-largest seafood company as ranked by annual sales. Nueva Pescanova is first with around EUR 1 billion (USD 1.1 billion) in sales in 2022 (the company has not yet released its annual sales for its 2023 fiscal year), with Grupo Profand recording a 15 percent increase in sales in 2022 to reach EUR 929 million (USD 1 billion) and slot in right behind Pescanova. Iberconsa ranks third with EUR 425 million (USD 470 million) in sales in 2022, though its solvency rating was recently downgraded by Moody’s due to its high debt load.

WOFCO, which increased its sales by 30 percent in 2022 to EUR 330 million (USD 348 million), recorded EUR 183 million (USD 200 million) in sales in the first half of 2023 – a 29.4 percent year-over-year jump. In 2022, it acquired 48 percent of Conarpesca, a fishing company based in Argentina, according to Alimarket, and it bought land from Auxiliar Conservera (Aucosa) to develop a new state-of-the-art processing facility in Chapela, Spain.

“WOFCO plans to adapt and recondition the existing facilities … to make a large investment and launch a refrigeration and fish-processing facility,” the company said in a statement.

WOFCO also plans on opening a processing plant in Paraguay at a cost of EUR 11 million (USD 12 million), which will have an annual capacity of 10,000 metric tons of raw and value-added products – primarily Argentinian red shrimp provided by Conarpesca. It also purchased the Ria de Aldan tuna vessel in April 2023, according to Alimarket.

Photo courtesy of Fandicosta


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