Since InVivo NSA was rebranded as "Neovia" in 2016, its progress has been marked by a "new way" of diversification, accelerated development and internationalisation. To Eric Nojac, CEO Asia of Neovia, Neovia as the common name across Asia has enhanced brand identification for its employees, partners and customers.

In an interview with eFeedLink, Nojac shares that Neovia had a turnover of EUR1.7 billion (US$1.9 billion) in 2017 with 8,950 employees and six business lines. The company has a presence in 26 countries including eight in Asia, namely, China, India, Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand, Singapore, Indonesia and the Philippines.

For its production sites in Asia, complete feed production is located in China, Indonesia, the Philippines and Vietnam. The Vietnam site also covers the Cambodian market. For its premix facilities, they are situated in China (which also exports and produces additives) and India. According to Nojac, there are plans for Neovia to further invest in China, the Philippines and Vietnam, with the current construction  of a complete feed facility in northern Vietnam.

Joining in the interview was Pierre Domps, Asia marketing director of Neovia, who elaborates: "In the recent years, we have successfully brought several new products and brands to the Asian markets. We have deployed Wisium, our international premix brand, within Asia which also includes feed additives such as T5X (mycotoxin management) or BSafe (AGP substitute). In complete feed, we have launched the range Presence in Cambodia and Vietnam for the distribution market and the range Evialis in Indonesia, the Philippines and Vietnam for the larger livestock farms."

One aspect of the rebranding of InVivo NSA as Neovia was the introduction of a separate aquaculture business line. To Nojac, this new aquaculture business line to Neovia means a holistic approach to the study of aquaculture species with their environment, starting from the hatchery to the harvest, taking care of feed and the environment. In September 2018, Neovia acquired Ecuadorian company Balnova, a shrimp feed producer. In 2017, Neovia acquired the US larval feed and probiotics manufacturer Epicore. And in 2016, Neovia acquired French company Acui-T which specialises in water treatment for fish ponds.

Closer to Asia, Neovia currently produces fish and shrimp feed in Vietnam, and in Indonesia and the Philippines, fish feed. The exports from Vietnam primarily go to India, Indonesia, Bangladesh and Malaysia.

For its aquaculture business line, Neovia has plans to "grow through specific acquisitions in Asia, or in new or established markets elsewhere in the world", Nojac summarised.

Across species, innovation as an approach to accelerated development forms the cornerstone of a rebranded Neovia. In Asia, the company has five research centres. These five centres form part of a global network and are in communication with centres in France and other countries. In addition, Neovia has research collaborations with universities and farmers including customers.

There are three research centres dedicated to poultry, with these facilities in India (near Mumbai), Indonesia and Vietnam. The centre in Dong Anh, Vietnam, studies chicken and duck broilers, duck layers and quail layers (duck and quail are important species for the Vietnamese market).

Also in Vietnam, Neovia has a research centre for fish and shrimp in Nha Be. Within this centre, Neovia has developed Biosipec, an innovative and sustainable shrimp farming project which can produce five cycles of shrimp per year with a yield of 30 tonnes/ha per cycle.

Recognising that Asia is a highly fragmented market with some similarities but also local specificities, Domps says that Neovia's core strategy for growth is a "glocal" approach which involves bringing international expertise and knowledge to Asia and adapting Neovia's products and services for local markets. He cites the example of products developed specifically for milkfish in the Philippines or marine fish species in Vietnam. For these to happen, Neovia's local teams would work "very closely" with its customers from small farms to big producers.

Neovia was also asked about the relevance of its France-based Farm of the Future to Asia.

"Key trends in global agrifood business such as consumer demand for good quality food, issues impacting climate change, and the development of new technologies like mobile applications are all relevant to Asia. Although Neovia's Farm of the Future is built in France, research data will be sourced from a global network involving farmers from Asia. This will be initiated through partner farms which will generate data on local farming conditions and markets. With insight from farmers and all stakeholders of agri food value chain, Neovia would be publishing in 2019 its farming prospective for 2030 that will be the guideline for innovation. Open innovation with a network of technological companies will also be a key asset for Neovia's future offers," Domps says.

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