Fast-growing Russian Group to add $200 million worth cod and haddock quota shares in big take-over deal
One of the biggest Russian fishing companies Murmansk Trawl Fleet (MTF) is deep into negotiations process with Karat Holding towards acquisition of the combine by the fast-growing group, reports http://www.megafishnet.com/ with reference to Rybatskaya Gazeta and other sources.
MTF is a part of "Murmansk Trawl Fleet Consortium", which includes five more fishing companies. The company's quota of cod and haddock for 2012 is 26700+10500 MT respectively while the value of the firm's 10-year quota shares is reportedly estimated at up to $200 million.
As the source says, the buyer is seeking to get both bottom and pelagic business of the company. It is not clear yet whether the buyer is interested in just one company, or the entire consortium.
It is worth mentioning that Karat recently purchased two big companies at Russia's Pacific: Roliz in Vladivostok and Akros at Kamchatka. Added to UTF, Karat fishing assets at Pacific made it one of the largest operators and, in particular, pollock quota holders.
Roliz currently owns 3 large (BATM class) trawlers: Archer, Ardatov, Amadei. The firm owns about 4% of squid quota, about 3% of Pollock (roughly 27,000MT in 2011), 5.5% of Olutorsky herring, 1.3% of Okhotsk herring, and token quotas for crabs and prawns. In A season 2011 the company produced 873MT of pollock roe only. The company's annual proceeds amount to USD 30-32mln, EBITDA - USD 8-9mln and net profit - USD 5-5.5mln.
Kamchatka-based Akros holds pollock quotas of about 52,400 MT in 2011 and UTF owns pollock quotas of nearly 12,000 MT.
Acquisition of the above mentioned three companies by Karat has made it the third biggest pollock quota holders in the Russian Far East with the total quota of 91,400 MT. (In terms of quota volumes Karat gives way only to Okeanrybflot with 102,000 MT and NBAMR with 102,000 MT.)
In Murmansk-led North Basin ZAO Karat and ZAO Karat-1 own cod and haddock quotas of about 14,000 MT of cod and 6,020 MT of haddock in 2011 to name just a few members of Karat Holding in the area.
According to Commersant, Karat is owned by ex deputy chairman of Russia's State Fisheries Committee Alexander Tugushev and his ex-compatriot and now citizen of Switzerland Vitaly Orlov who is owner of Norwegian fishing combine Ocean Trawlers currently operating 16 fishing vessels in Murmansk and UTF Company in Kamchatka.
After graduating from Murmansk Marine Engineer College Mr. Tugushev worked as captain's mate in Murmansk Trawl Fleet until 1990. In 1990-1998 he worked for fish companies of Sigma, Kona International, Sovintrade LTD and Karat. In 1998-1999 Mr. Tugushev was appointed director of Murmansk Trawl Fleet-3 JSC, a member of the same called consortium. In 1999-2002 he was vice-president of Murmansk Trawl Fleet Consortium. In 2002-2003 Mr. Tugushev was president of Murmanrybprom. In 2003 he was appointed deputy chairman of Russia's State Committee on Fisheries. In 2004 the Government commissioned Mr. Tugushev to preside liquidation commission due to the Committee's transformation into currently functioning Federal Fisheries Agency. Later he left the government service to switch to business activities.
According to media sources, now Mr. Tugushev is an actual owner of 10 large fishing companies in the Russian Northwest (Murmansk, Arkhangelsk and Karelia) and two large fishing companies in the nation's Far East.
Consolidation process is under way in Russian fishing industry, and probably soon we'll see even more mergers and takeovers. This process will give the beneficiaries involved especially in the whitefish sector more power both on export and domestic market.