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Sealord’s profits grow thanks to deep water catches

Sealord products. (Photo Credit: Sealord)
Click on the flag for more information about New ZealandNEW ZEALAND
Wednesday, December 24, 2014, 01:40 (GMT + 9)
New Zealand's second largest seafood company, Sealord achieved a profit amounting to NZD 20.6 million (USD 15.9 million) over the last 15 months due to a good performance from the company's deep water fishing unit.
The company informed that as that period included two off-season fishing periods, the results are not so good as they would be for a 12 month period.
According to chief financial officer Jason Dale, this profit increase was due to the successful deep water fishing business unit, which catches mainly white fish out beyond the coastline thanks to lower costs and higher prices this year for protein in general and white fish in particular.
The Nelson- and Auckland-based company's profit was a marked improvement on last year's NZD 36.5 million (USD 28.2 million) loss, which was the result of a failed fishing venture in Argentina.
Dale also pointed out that the firm, owned by Te Ohu Kaimoana (the Treaty of Waitangi Fisheries Commission) and half owned by Nippon Suisan company of Japan, has been expanding more into selling retail products such as packaged fresh and frozen fish, instead of a commodity product.
Sealord's year-on-year catches reached over 117,000 tonnes, 90 per cent of which is exported to more than 60 countries. New Zealand accounts for 16 per cent of Sealord's market by value.
Sealord reported plans to downsize its Nelson wetfish factory, whose net profit amounted to NZD 25.3 million (USD 19.5 million) in the 12 months ended 30 September, representing a loss of NZD 44.4 million (USD 34.3 million) a year earlier,3News informed.
“It was no longer economically viable in the face of rising costs and flat prices combined with a strong kiwi dollar,” the firm stated.
For his part, Sealord general manager fishing Doug Paulin remarked, "This allows us to keep a number of our permanent wetfish employees and also continue to offer seasonal work to more than 100 other people in the Nelson region".
The company informed its intention to exit its mussel operations to focus on its core fishing business, putting its 50 per cent stake in North Island Mussels up for sale, which it bought out of receivership in partnership with Sanford in 2012.

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