Sealord buys out remaining 50 percent of Petuna Aquaculture

Nelson, New Zealand-based Sealord Group has bought the remainder of Petuna Aquaculture, a Tasmania, Australia-based salmon and trout farmer.

Founded in the early 1990s by Peter and Una Rockliff, Petuna Aquaculture farms ocean trout and Tasmanian Atlantic salmon. Sealord purchased 50 percent of Petuna Aquaculture in 2010 and the two firms entered into a joint venture operation.

"We are delighted to obtain full ownership of Petuna Aquaculture as it's an opportunity to build a strong second platform to complement our core deep-sea fishing business and helps fulfill our strategic vision to better manage volatility in primary industry markets,” Sealord Chief Executive Officer Steve Yung said in a press release.

Petuna Aquaculture will become a 100-percent-owned subsidiary of Sealord Group Ltd, effective 3 February, 2020. Sealord Chairman Whaimutu Dewes said Sealord was prepared to make significant additional investment into the business.

Petuna Aquaculture CEO Ruben Alvarez said, until he hears otherwise, he planned to run the business with no changes.

“We have made significant gains over the past few years and the prospects for future growth and development are very encouraging,” he said. “Petuna already has plans for expansion in Tasmania’s northwest and in the south, which are subject to continuing community consultation and regulatory approval.”

In a release, the Rockliffs said the decision to sell was difficult but “in the long-term best interests of the business.”  

“It’s like parting with a family member,” they said. “But it’s time to provide the opportunity for the business to further develop into one of the world’s finest aquaculture enterprises.”

Dewes praised the Rockliffs innovative efforts and commitment to sustainable management and environment protection.

“Their contribution to the industry and to the principles of sustainable aquaculture are a matter of historic record,” he said. “Their pioneering spirit will always remain at the heart of Petuna’s culture.”


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