March 28, 2017
Japan's Nissui buys Sealord UK processing plant
New Zealand's Sealord Group Ltd announced Monday, March 27, that it is selling its Great Britain-based Sealord Caistor processing business to a wholly owned subsidiary of Nippon Suisan Kaisha Ltd (Nissui), which owns half of Sealord.
"This will be effective from the 1st of April 2017. The business will be renamed Caistor Seafoods Ltd", it said in a release. Nissui confirmed the deal, also on Monday.
Sealord Caistor supplies fresh and processed seafood to the British supermarket chain Waitrose, which prides itself on the quality, sustainability and traceability of the products it sells.
Sealord CEO Steve Yung explained the rationale behind the decision to sell out: "All businesses need to have a clear focus and prioritise, along with continually reviewing their operations. The strategic decision to sell our interests in Sealord Caistor enables us to continue to be focused on operational performance and our vision to be the best deep sea fishing business in New Zealand with a significant salmon farming operation in Australia".
Yung added that Sealord Caistor has been a valuable contributor to the Sealord Group over many years.
"We believe the Caistor business is strong, with good long-term prospects and a solid relationship with its cornerstone customer, the Waitrose supermarket chain. Being aligned with a company that has similar ambitions in the European seafood processing space will help the business achieve its full potential", Yung also said.
Sealord Caistor Chief Executive Adrian Crookes, for his part, said it would be "business as usual" despite the change of ownership.
"There will be no change to our focus of servicing Waitrose with great quality seafood, and Waitrose has given its full support to Nissui's 100 percent investment", Crookes said.