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Major Benefits From Sealord Deal

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
4 DECEMBER 2000


MAJOR BENEFITS FROM SEALORD DEAL


Jobs, investment and new technology will flow from Nissui’s investment in seafood enterprise Sealord and Sealord’s quota will be 100% owned by Te Ohu Kai Moana (Treaty of Waitangi Fisheries Commission), says chairman Shane Jones.

Mr Jones said Te Ohu Kai Moana and Japanese international seafood company Nippon Suisan Kaisha Limited (Nissui) made a joint bid for Brierley Investments’ 50% share of Sealord.

Under a conditional agreement reached today Te Ohu Kai Moana will own all Sealord’s New Zealand quota. The Sealord operating company will be 50% owned by Te Ohu Kai Moana and 50% by Nissui.

Mr Jones said that the deal, which is subject to Overseas Investment Commission (OIC) approval, is a win-win for everyone involved. “From a Maori perspective this is a good deal.”

“Sealord holds about 23 percent of New Zealand’s quota. If the new deal is approved, Te Ohu Kai Moana will increase their ownership of this quota from 50 percent to 100 percent and become a major player in the world’s commercial seafood industry.

“New Zealand will secure the property right to Sealord’s quota and New Zealanders will benefit from jobs, investment and technology.

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“Te Ohu Kai Moana and Nissui expect to create up to 700 new and additional jobs for New Zealanders over the next five years. We will increase investment in Sealord’s production of value-added products and aquaculture and open up more high-paying export markets for Sealord’s expanding range of high-value seafood products.

“The Sealord Group will continue to grow and increase in value. It is currently one of the top 10 seafood enterprises in the world and, together with Nissui, will be a significant player in the world whitefish business,” he said.

“We have restructured the Sealord Group so that Nissui is investing in the company and its expertise, not the New Zealand quota. Sealord will operate using our quota on contract.”

Mr Jones said it had taken some time to put the structure in place. ‘Hence our negotiations with Brierley before approaching the OIC – we wanted to secure a deal with Brierley’s as soon as possible.”

Maori had long appreciated the benefits of global trade, Mr Jones said. “We live in a global economy, we need to attract foreign investment and play an active part in global markets. Te Ohu Kai Moana has always seen Sealord’s added value globalisation strategy as the best way for Maori to get maximum value from their asset.

“Over the past few months we have considered and talked to potential purchasers of the Brierley stake in Sealord. We chose Nissui as a partner because it has the financial strength and expertise to add most value to Sealord and to help Sealord expand in New Zealand and overseas.”

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Mr Jones said Nissui had a proven track record in New Zealand. “It was a shareholder in Sealord from 1973 until 1990. It pioneered much of the early New Zealand deepwater fishing in hoki, squid and other species and it supported Sealord’s on-shore development of hoki processing.

“Sealord staff numbers grew from about 200 to more than 800 when Nissui was a shareholder,” he said.

“Te Ohu Kai Moana has continued the development. Sealord Group revenue has more than doubled since 1992, when we took up our 50 percent share, and has reached $540 million per annum. Staff numbers have increased by a further 500.

“Sealord’s success is due to the added value strategies it has followed for the past six years and this deal will ensure the success and growth continue,” Mr Jones said.

ENDS

For further information contact:
Shane Jones, Chairman, Te Ohu Kai Moana
Glenn Hema Inwood, Te Ohu Kai Moana Communications, 021 498 010

NISSUI

 Nippon Suisan Kaisha Limited (Nissui) is an international company with many years’ experience in adding value to seafood throughout the fishing, processing and marketing chain.
 It produces a range of food products, feedstock and medical products and has fishing, processing and marketing bases and joint ventures in 18 countries worldwide.
 It has relationships with New Zealand companies and organisations outside the seafood industry which includes its 14 percent shareholding in ANZCO Foods Limited, purchasing relationships with Heinz Wattie & Quality Bakers and sponsorship of the New Zealand Rugby Football Union for the last 12 years.
 Nissui was a shareholder in Sealord from 1973 until 1990 with a shareholding that varied from 16.8 percent to 24 percent.
 Nissui pioneered much of the early New Zealand deepwater fishing in hoki, squid, pelagic species, southern blue whiting, ling, hake and silver warehou. It operated up to seven vessels in New Zealand waters at a time when the New Zealand industry could not afford the significant investment in deep-water fishery vessels.
 Sealord developed value added on-shore processing of hoki with Nissui’s support. Value added processing has enabled Sealord to increase the returns from hoki and build demand for its hoki products amongst overseas customers.
 Nissui provided the technology, skills and capital to enable Sealord to produce specialist fillets and coated products. Among other things this led to the installation of a water jet line in 1988.
 Sealord’s staff grew from about 200 to over 800 while Nissui was a shareholder.
 Since the sale of its shareholding Nissui has continued a close relationship with Sealord.
 Nissui and Sealord worked together to develop New Zealand processing of ‘hoki fry’ - a specially cut and coated product for the Japanese market. This highly successful product has created about 120 new jobs at Sealord and led to the installation of a bakery (a joint venture with a Gisborne company) to produce the special coating systems required for the product.
 Nissui and Sealord are both joint venture investors with the Chilean fishing company Friosur.
 Nissui and Sealord jointly own the freezer trawler Pa¯kura.
 Sealord crews the Nissui-owned vessel Taharaki, which has a mostly New Zealand crew.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
4 DECEMBER 2000

SEALORD POISED FOR NEXT LEAP

Sealord Group revenues reached $540 million this year and the company is poised for its next leap forward, Sealord Board Chairman Sir Tipene O’Regan said today.

Sir Tipene said Sealord was pleased at the prospect of Nissui as a shareholder because it will enhance Sealord’s added value strategy and make the companies leaders on the world market.

“Sealord and Nissui between them will account for a significant amount of the world’s whitefish trading and this will create opportunities to increase revenue to New Zealand. Nissui has a commitment to value added products and brings investment, plus skills and technology that will increase Sealord’s range of products.

“We already have strong ties and the new shareholding, if approved by the Overseas Investment Commission, will be a very complementary fit.”

Sir Tipene said one of Sealord’s most successful products, hoki fry, was developed in partnership with Nissui. “Hoki fry is a specially cut and coated portion of hoki fillet sold in the Asian market. Sealord was the first company to successfully produce the product outside Japan and it has created about 120 jobs at Sealord’s Nelson site.

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“Sealord and Nissui are 50/50 partners in the freezer trawler Pa¯kura, currently in South Africa; Sealord crews the Nissui owned vessel Taharaki; and we are both investors in a Chilean company which fishes for orange roughy.”

Sir Tipene said Sealord is New Zealand’s largest deep sea fishing company and holds about 23 percent of New Zealand’s quota. It employs about 1600 people within New Zealand.

Sealord Chief Executive Phil Lough said the company’s highly successful value added strategy had been the foundation for growth and expansion over the past six years. “The value added strategy requires skilled permanent staff, high quality production methods and a global network of fishing, processing and marketing companies. It provides a platform for future growth, lessens the impacts of movements in fish prices, shows steadily improving returns and provides increased employment opportunities.

“In the past six years we have placed a strong emphasis on quality and innovation, invested in vessels, plant, and staff training, established an overseas marketing network, and expanded our quota base and processing flexibility.

“During the time of joint Te Ohu Kai Moana and BIL shareholding, Sealord has built a global fishing, processing and marketing network with companies, alliances and joint ventures in over 20 countries. Demand for our products is high and we have strong relationships with customers worldwide. Nissui’s involvement would enable us to grow the business still further.”

ENDS
For further information contact:
Phil Lough, Sealord Chief Executive, 03 546 0935, 025 425 447
Merrill Coke, Group Communications Consultant, 025 480 652


Sealord Group Ltd

Sealord is:
 One of the world’s top ten seafood enterprises operating with an internationally known and respected brand.
 The largest quota holder in New Zealand (it holds about 23 percent of NZ’s quota).
 The largest orange roughy fishing, processing and marketing company in the world.
 The largest Greenshell™ Mussel processor and exporter in New Zealand.
 The largest added value hoki company internationally


Vessels and Plants
 A fleet of seven modern vessels including three state of the art factory freezer trawlers, three fresh fish trawlers and a joint venture longliner.
 Wetfish and coated products plants at Port Nelson.
 A Greenshell Mussel plant at Tahunanui, Nelson.
 A wetfish plant in Dunedin.
 A range of contract and charter vessels


Staff
Sealord employs about 1600 staff within New Zealand.
 Nelson is the largest base with about 1200 people including wetfish, coated products and shellfish processing staff, fishers, management, support and clerical staff, engineers, and research and development staff.
 There are about 300 staff at the Dunedin processing site.
 Sealord’s New Zealand marketing operation is based in Auckland with representatives in major centres throughout New Zealand.


Examples of Value Added Products
 Hoki fry. A specially cut portion of hoki fillet with a special coating made to a Japanese recipe. Created for the Asian market, hoki fry has generated an additional 120 jobs in five years.
 Hoki loins. The fillet steak of the fish cut to specific weights and sizes. Created for the European market.
 Individually Quick Frozen fillets. Fillets frozen in a special IQF tunnel and boxed or bagged. Produced for the Japanese and American markets.

Overseas Ventures Include
 Petuna in Australia. Sealord is a partner in a 50/50 joint venture with an established Tasmanian company Petuna. The joint venture owns quota for hoki, orange roughy, silver warehou, ling and other species.
 Friosur in Chile. Sealord holds a 33 percent interest in a joint venture with this long established Chilean company and a subsidiary of Japanese company Nissui. The joint venture holds about 36 percent of the licenses for Chile’s total allowable catch of orange roughy.
 Yuken in Argentina. Sealord is a partner in a 50/50 joint venture with established Argentinean company Pesel Group. The company owns four vessels fishing in Argentinean waters and licenses for hoki, squid and hake.
 AKB in the United Kingdom. Sealord owns two processing plants near the famous fishing port of Grimsby, which are used to supply United Kingdom customers like retailer Waitrose. Sealord is supplying the 123-store chain with packaged chilled product from New Zealand and Iceland.
 Gendor and Deep Ocean in Namibia. Sealord is a shareholder and one of the founder partners in fishing and processing companies based in Namibia. Gendor Holdings has grown into a business with annual sales of about NZ$50 million.


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