Better days ahead, says Atlantic Sapphire


The Florida-based salmon company Atlantic Sapphire is looking to an improved performance in 2024 following the problems it experienced this year with high water temperatures.

In a third quarter operational update, the RAS (recirculating aquaculture systems) producer said it expects to reach an EBITDA (earnings before interest tax depreciation and amortisation) break-even point by next summer.

The year began reasonably well for Atlantic Sapphire before the high water temperature issues struck during the July to September period.

As previously reported, those problems have now been resolved and the company reports it has now returned to production mode. Because of these challenges, however, the final quarter harvest is only expected to be around 300 tonnes.

Atlantic Sapphire signalled it is looking to a better start next year targeting break-even for its phase one operation.

It expects the following improvements:

▪ Standing biomass expected to have reached Phase 1 budgeted level.

▪ Material ramp-up of harvest volumes, supported by growth rates and mortality in line with phase 1 business plan, is expected to significantly reduce cash burn.

▪ The company estimates to reach EBITDA break-even towards the end of H1 2024, assuming biological performance will return to same level as in June 2023.

Atlantic Sapphire also said it is taking advantage of a US “megatrend”, in that the country is by far the largest salmon consumer market in the world at 600,000 tons per year .

At the same time US production is scarce with consumers generally reliant on European or South-American salmon imports which carry significant freight costs.

The company says phase two, currently under construction, will more than double capacity.

The update adds: “Having invested US $645m [£529m] of equity since inception, Atlantic Sapphire has had strong supporters both in the equity and debt markets.

“Leading salmon farmer and largest shareholder Nordlaks is showing continued support through additional operational support and resources on the ground in Miami.”


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