Former Cermaq Chile chief to head Atlantic Sapphire

Pedro Courard (photo: Cermaq Chile)

The former head of Cermaq Chile, Pedro Courard, has been named as the next chief executive at land-based salmon farmer Atlantic Sapphire.

He will succeed the company’s founder, Johan Andreassen, who announced more than six months ago that he intended to step down.

Joachim Wessel, currently Cermaq’s Commercial and Supply Chain Director in Chile, has been appointed as Courard’s successor.

Pedro Courard (pictured) is an industrial engineer with a Masters in Business Administration. He has been involved in the salmon industry in Chile for over 25 years, holding different management positions, most of them related to production and operation.

Courard will start on 1 August and this announcement marks the conclusion of an extensive search process over the past half year.

Pedro Courard is an industrial engineer with a Master in Business Administration. He has been involved in the salmon industry in Chile for over 25 years, holding different management positions, most of them related to production and operation.

During the last 15 years he has held management positions in different company. He was the Managing Director of Ocea Chile (today Scale), Farming Director in Multi X and, since 2022, the Managing Director of Cermaq Chile, Chile’s second largest salmon producer.

At Cermaq, he was part of the team that led the successful turnaround process of Cermaq Chile, positioning the company as a top performer in the country’s salmon farming industry.

Founder and outgoing CEO Johan Andreassen said: “I am very pleased that after a long and thorough process Pedro Courard has been selected as my successor.

“Pedro has a strong operational track record from the Chilean salmon industry and I am convinced that he will be a good match to lead the Miami operations and take the Company to operational excellence in Phase One and beyond.”

He said the strategic position of Atlantic Sapphire is stronger today than ever, as the sole land-based salmon producer at scale in the vast and growing US market with a unique location that will enable the company to grow its production to unmatched scale, sustainably.”

Johan Andreassen will remain in the CEO role until Mr. Courard has relocated to Florida and will also stay in the company for a period thereafter to secure a seamless transition.

Pedro Courard said: “I am extremely excited and I feel honoured to have been selected to lead the next steps of the largest land-based production project in the world, with all the opportunities and challenges it involves for me on a personal level.”

He added: “I’m convinced that land-based salmon farming has the potential to solve many of the challenges that global protein production faces today.”

“Pedro has been a great asset to Cermaq since he joined Cermaq Chile as Production Director in August 2019, before becoming Managing Director in February 2022. While we are sorry to see him leave us, we wish him the best in an exciting change of position to a different country and with new challenges ahead”, said Steven Rafferty Global, CEO of Cermaq.

Joachim Wessel joined Cermaq at the start of 2020 and has a long and successful career in the salmon industry; he has worked for major companies such as Mowi and AquaChile and previously was a CEO of another salmon company, Friosur.

Rafferty said: “We are lucky to have an experienced professional like Joachim to step into the MD position. Joachim is well respected internally in Cermaq as well as externally in the Chilean industry. I have no doubt he will be an excellent leader of Cermaq Chile. We have an experienced team in Chile and we are well placed for a successful future.”

Joachim Wessel, incoming CEO, Cermaq Chile

Author

Keep up with us

Fish Farmer May 2024 cover

The May 2024 issue of Fish Farmer is out now online