Måsøval sees revenue, profits up for Q4 but a loss for 2023

A workboat passes fish pens leaving a wake

Norwegian salmon farmer Måsøval has reported a big jump in revenue and operating profit for the final quarter of 2023.

The story for the full year was less upbeat, however, with Måsøval recording increased revenue of NOK 2,400m (£180m) compared with NOK 1,992m (£149m), but operational EBIT down 32% to NOK 471.4m (£35m).

The group reported a financial loss of NOK 136,428,000 (£10.2m) for the full year, taking into account tax, profit sharing with co-location partners, fair value adjustment for biomass and write-down of investment in Aqua Semi, a semi-closed containment system for which the group had obtained four development licences.

For Q4 the group saw revenue of NOK 688,398,000m (£51.6m) up from NOK 400m, and operational EBIT (earnings before interest and taxation, or operating profit) was NOK 112m (£8.4m) up 157% year-on-year. Segmented by geographical area, the Farming Mid region recorded an EBIT of NKK 19/kg (£1.42) and the West region, NOK 8/kg (£0.60). The latter saw a fall in EBIT/kg from NOK 18 (£1.35) in Q4 2022.

Måsøval said Farming West had been forced to harvest early at some sites because of fish welfare considerations.

Total harvested volume for the quarter was 7,927 tonnes (Q4 2022: 5,032 tonnes), making the total for the calendar year 2023 24,531 tonnes.

The company said the new resource rent or “ground rent” tax introduced last year had cost NOK 284m (about £21m), including one-off implementation costs.

The group is undergoing a major reorganisation which, when completed, will mean:

  • Holding company will be Måsøval AS;
  • All licenses and biomass held in a separate company Måsøval Lisens AS;
  • All employees and certain equipment and assets held in a separate company Måsøval Drift AS;
  • Service vessels and equipment owned by Måsøval Akva AS and operated by Måsøval Service AS (no change); and
  • Smolt production, processing facilities and sales held in separate special purpose vehicles (no change).

Måsøval said the restructuring would have no net impact for shareholders.

The Q4 report also included an update on Pure Norwegian Seafood, 65% owned by Måsøval, which was found to have sold frozen salmon not authorised for human consumption. Måsøval said the relevant authorities had been informed regarding the findings of its investigation into the situation and added: “There are no indications that products have affected people’s health… financial effects for Måsøval are marginal.”

Måsøval expects to harvest between 25,700 and 26,700 tonnes this year, with potential for further growth in future.

Crew mmewber in safety gear on a pen woth a workboat behind


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