The main shrimp company in Ecuador, Industrial Pesquera Santa Priscila, and a reference for organic production of the crustacean, still negotiates 30% of its shares with a Japanese commercial giant: Mitsui & Co.
The specialized portal Undercurrent News has said that people close to the negotiation confirmed that the Japanese company wants 25% of the package, but EXPRESO spoke with people close to the shrimp company, who confirmed the interest of taking a 30% stake.
Santa Priscila is in the first place in the ranking of the most important shrimp companies in Ecuador, with a consistently relevant growth.
The data of the Superintendence of Companies are conclusive: in the year 2017 its sales were 480.2 million dollars, 542 million more than a year before. But 152 million more than in 2015.
Its profitability is much more attractive: 22 million (number 33 in the national ranking in this indicator), 15.6% more in relation to 2016, according to the latest data available from the Superintendency.
Mitsui appears in the latest report of Undercurrent on the rise of mergers and acquisitions of seafood products worldwide. “The Japanese has been acquisitive in fish and seafood in recent times. It is said that Mitsui is looking to increase its stake in the Vietnamese shrimp processor Minh Phu Seafood Corp and obtain a minority position in the US importer Mark Foods last year.”
Santa Priscila produces and exports shrimp since 1976. It harvests in its pools more than 77 million kilograms of shrimp and exports to China, Japan, South Korea, Vietnam, Singapore, France, Spain, Italy, the United States, Latin America and Asia.
Robert Vera, expert in shrimp issues, argues that this fever in investments in aquaculture businesses in Ecuador has caused several important companies to land, such as Biomar, Cargill, Skretting and others that produce balanced feed and breeding technology; but in the case of Mitsui, the interest “lies in a high price of the pound of shrimp in Japan: $ 20.”
Santa Priscilla has also improved the value of its assets and assets, and has taken distance from its immediate follower, Omarsa, with $ 120 million more in turnover. Its integrated business (swimming pools, laboratories and food factory) also achieves greater efficiency and profitability.
“We are a fully integrated company, we have our own farms (swimming pools), six laboratories for the production of larvae, a balanced feed plant and two processing plants. This in turn allows us to function in an organized manner and not depend on the production of third parties, “the company says on its website.
The executives of the firm (which also exports tilapia) have not ruled on the matter.
Shrimp has been the fastest growing export product in the last decade. In 2018 it surpassed the banana.
The export of the sector began to fall so far this year, due to a reduction in the price in international markets, according to the Chamber. (I)