Pescanova to commission new vessels in Namibia and Mozambique
Spanish vertically integrated firm Grupo Nueva Pescanova will invest US$46.3 million to renew its fleet in Africa
This comes as part of its 2020 strategic plan, which also foresees expanding sales in the US retail market, the firm’s CEO, Ignacio Gonzalez Hernandez, told Undercurrent News. Following the capital increase approved last month, the firm plans to invest in a new research and development centre called Pescanova Biomarine Center, a new IT integrated system, maintenance and fleet renewal.
Depending on the agreements with shipyards, the firm will build seven to nine vessels in Namibia and Mozambique, Gonzalez told Undercurrent. “This company hasn’t built vessels for the last 30 years or more, and the fact that we are returning to build vessels is a clear sign that Pescanova is back, problems are behind us and the firm is looking at the future with its new plan,” Gonzalez said.
Nueva Pescanova’s vertical integration, strong brand and operations across both wild catch and aquaculture give it a strong business model, said the CEO. “We will launch the project in June. We have talked to four to give shipyards so far, but we will talk with more companies,” Gonzalez said adding that the group will ideally prefer to commission Spanish shipyards, if possible.
“In Africa we are present in Namibia and South Africa, where we have 15 vessels and we catch 30,000 tons of hake. We also are in Mozambique, where we fish prawns [shrimps], and in Angola we catch deep sea prawns [shrimps] and red shrimps,” Gonzalez said.
In Mozambique, the company catches approximately 50% of the total allowable catch (TAC), while in Namibia it catches about 20% of the country’s hake TAC Gonzalez said, adding that they had to defend their quotas in Namibia.
According to Gonzalez, Nueva Pescanova’s operations in Namibia generate about 2,200 jobs. The catch is processed in the country, before being sent for retail in Europe. “We also have interesting sales in South Africa,” said Gonzalez.
Meanwhile, Pescanova’s turnover in the US is about $100 million which accounts for 10% of the firm´s total revenue. The firm recently hired a new CEO in the US to develop the business expansion there. According to its strategic plan for 2020, Pescanova plans to sharply increase its business in the North American market, with a particular focus on rising sales in retail and investing more in its brand.