Mowi poised to take control of Arctic Fish

Mowi is set to take a majority stake in the Icelandic salmon breeder Arctic Fish.

It is Mowi’s first significant move into aquaculture in Iceland. Mowi recently warned that the controversial Norwegian ground rent tax announcement last month might force the international salmon giant to invest more outside Norway.

Mowi said it had been following Arctic Fish for a number of years and was impressed with its staff and progress. So it is possible that this deal may have been in the making before the tax proposal was disclosed.

It has acquired 51.28% of the shares in Arctic Fish, which were owned by Norway Royal Salmon which is to be taken over by SalMar. Now SalMar has agreed to sell the NRS Arctic Fish holding  to Mowi for NOK 115 per share, corresponding to NOK 1.88m (£158m).

SalMar already has extensive salmon interests in Iceland through its ownership of Arnarlax.

Located in the Westfjords, Arctic Fish is listed on Euronext Growth Oslo and is one of Iceland’s most successful salmon farmers. It has licences for 10 ASC-certified locations with a total of 27,100 tonnes of maximum permitted biomass, as well as a further 4,800 tonnes in the application process.

The company expects to slaughter 10,600 tonnes of salmon by gutted weight in 2022.

Mowi CEO Ivan Vindheim said: “The Icelandic salmon adventure has only just begun and faces formidable development and growth in the coming years.

“We are therefore very happy to have the opportunity to take part in this. Icelandic fjords offer very good biological conditions for salmon.

“Arctic Fish’s geographical presence and competent organization fit very well with Mowi’s current business and strategy. Together with Mowi and our toolbox as well as a strong financial position, Arctic Fish and its other owners are very well equipped for an attractive growth journey going forward for the good of the local communities.”

The transaction is subject to approval by the European Commission as well as some other ordinary implementation conditions. The settlement will be financed in cash using Mowi’s existing drawing rights.

 

Ivan Vindheim, Mowi CEO