SalMar clarifies Arnarlax share deal, Icelandic ambitions

Published on
February 20, 2019

In line with Oslo Stock Exchange (Oslo Børs) rules, the Norway-headquartered salmon farmer SalMar ASA has provided further details of the additional shares that it is purchasing in Arnalax AS. 

On 14 February, SalMar entered into an agreement to acquire 3,268,670 shares in the Icelandic salmon producer at NOK 55.00 (USD 6.41, EUR 5.65) per share, with the deal totaling almost NOK 180 million (USD 21 million, EUR 18.5 million). It purchased 1,026,418 shares from Tryggingamiðstöðin hf and 2,242,252 shares from Fiskisund ehf. 

The transaction will be settled in cash and financed through use of an existing financing facility in SalMar. Completion of the transaction is expected to take place 21 February.

SalMar already owned 41.95 percent of the shares in the company and the new transaction will increase its ownership to 54.23 percent. After the transaction, it will gain control of Arnarlax through its ownership and the results from Arnarlax will be consolidated into SalMar's group accounts. 

Located in the west fjords, Arnarlax is Iceland’s largest salmon farmer. The company was incorporated in 2009 and had its first harvest in 2016. It is a vertically integrated business with its own hatcheries, sea sites, wellboat, processing plant and sales channel.

In 2018, Arnalax had an operating income of NOK 400.4 million (USD 46.7 million, EUR 41.1 million), down from NOK 625.4 million (USD 72.9 million, EUR 64.3 million) in the previous year. Its operational earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT) also fell from NOK 60.2 million (USD 7 million, EUR 6.2 million) to NOK -78.9 million (USD -9.2 million, EUR -8.1 million), while its net profit improved by more than NOK 100 million (USD 11.7 million, EUR 10.3 million) to NOK -29.3 million (USD -3.4 million, EUR -3 million). Last year’s harvest totaled 6,700 metric tons (MT), down from 9,700 MT in 2017.

SalMar said that strategically the transaction represents “a natural step,” as it wishes to further develop Arnarlax and salmon farming in Iceland.

In 2018, SalMar achieved record results, with its operating revenues in excess of NOK 11.3 billion (USD 1.3 billion, EUR 1.2 billion) and an EBIT of almost NOK 3.5 billion (USD 404.5 million, EUR 358.7 million).

It expects to harvest a total 145,000 MT of salmon in Norway in 2019, while Norskott Havbruk (Scottish Seafarms) is expected to harvest 30,000 MT and Icelandic producer Arnarlax is expected to harvest 10,000 MT.

Photo courtesy of Arnarlax

Contributing Editor reporting from London, UK

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