A consortium of broad-based black economic empowerment investors, led by fishing and food business Sea Harvest together with its subsidiary Sea Harvest Corporation, has entered into sale agreements with Viking Fishing Holdings to acquire the fishing business and selected shareholdings of Viking Fishing Holdings for R884-million.
Viking Fishing Holdings is controlled by Odin Investments, the Viking Staff Share Trust, the Viking Social and Upliftment Trust, Redburg Investments and RWFT Investments, and some of its subsidiaries and joint ventures, including Longline Fishing, Gerombe Fishing Enterprises and Ziyabuya Fishing Company.
The acquisition includes Sea Harvest Aquaculture – a subsidiary of Sea Harvest – entering into a share purchase agreement with Viking Group Administration, Redburg Investments and the trustees to acquire 51% of issued share capital of Viking Aquaculture – a subsidiary of Viking Fishing Holdings.
Viking Aquaculture is one of the largest diversified aquaculture producers in South Africa, farming abalone, mussels, oysters and trout across a number of locations in South Africa and Namibia.
Sea Harvest actively seeks to grow its business through acquisitions in the fishing and aquaculture sectors in line with the company’s strategy of becoming one of the largest black-owned diversified global seafood and food companies.
It is confident that this acquisition will generate value through the complementary nature of the fishing businesses and the diversification into other wild-caught species and aquaculture.
Sea Harvest stated that the transaction will have a positive impact on the fishing industry in South Africa as it will significantly increase black ownership in the fishing industry; ensure the preservation of 1 600 jobs; and introduce two new small, medium-sized and microenterprise players into the fishing industry.
The transaction, once complete, will also contribute to the establishment of sizeable operational black industrialists, and contribute to inclusive growth and participation through access, diversity, empowerment and transformation in the mainstream South African economy.