Pro­cess­ing/Re­tail News

Seachill sale

Fish Farmer - - Contents -

FI­NAL com­ple­tion is ex­pected this month.

Ice­landic said the Seachill sale process, an­nounced by its main board in April this year, re­ceived sig­nif­i­cant in­ter­est from mul­ti­ple par­ties on a global ba­sis. But Hil­ton emerged as the likely suc­cess­ful bid­der at the end of July.

Ice­andic said the en­ter­prise value of the deal is worth £84 mil­lion, but the ac­tual cash fig­ure is £80.8 mil­lion and it rep­re­sents the largest sale of a UK based seafood busi­ness for many years.

Seachill, mak­ers of the highly suc­cess­ful Saucy Fish Co range, will now be­come a stand­alone di­vi­sion of Hil­ton fol­low­ing com­ple­tion, with the ex­ist­ing Seachill man­age­ment team re­main­ing in place.

Si­mon Smith, the cur­rent Seachill CEO, will con­tinue to lead the busi­ness as a di­vi­sional head of Hil­ton.

Seachill is a ma­jor sup­plier of chilled and frozen nat­u­ral white fish and sal­mon and added value prod­ucts within the coated and ready-to-eat fish sec­tors.

Hil­ton’s busi­ness was es­tab­lished in 1994 to set up and op­er­ate a beef and lamb cen­tral meat pack­ing fa­cil­ity in Hunt­ing­don. It has grown rapidly and now has six fac­to­ries, and its prod­ucts are sold in su­per­mar­kets across 14 Euro­pean coun­tries.

Hil­ton is a pub­licly traded com­pany listed on the Main Mar­ket of the London Stock Ex­change.

Herdís Dröfn Fjeld­sted, chair of the board of Ice­landic Group and CEO of the Ice­landic En­ter­prise In­vest­ment Fund (EIF), said: ‘This agree­ment to sell the busi­ness comes af­ter the com­ple­tion of a very suc­cess­ful re-or­gan­i­sa­tion of our UK busi­nesses un­der the cur­rent man­age­ment team into a sin­gle busi­ness known as Seachill, which has given a scale that has en­abled the growth of stronger and more suc­cess­ful strate­gic re­la­tion­ships with cus­tomers and sup­pli­ers.

‘It is clear that Hil­ton is very well po­si­tioned to de­liver fur­ther suc­cess for the busi­ness.’

Si­mon Smith added: ‘There is a very strong strate­gic fit be­tween the busi­nesses, and I be­lieve the trans­ac­tion will be wel­comed by all stake­hold­ers.

‘Un­der the own­er­ship of Hil­ton we will be able to in­vest fur­ther in our fa­cil­i­ties and im­prove our or­gan­i­sa­tional ca­pa­bil­ity to serve our cus­tomers bet­ter.

‘This is great news for the on­go­ing suc­cess of the busi­ness.’

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