SSC marketing boss Su Cox at the launch of the Sølvtrans wellboat Ronjafisk, which is on a five-year contract with the company. SSC spent £7.5m on wellboat lease payments last year. Photo: Aas Mek.
SSC marketing boss Su Cox at the launch of the Sølvtrans wellboat Ronjafisk, which is on a five-year contract with the company. SSC spent £7.5m on wellboat lease payments last year. Photo: Aas Mek.

Covid, Brexit and biology blamed for salmon farmer’s £19.4m loss

The Scottish Salmon Company Limited (SSC) made a pre-tax loss of almost £19.4 million last year, compared to a pre-tax profit of £19.5m in 2019, recently published accounts show.

Publisert

“2020 was a challenging year for the business and this is reflected in the disappointing financial results compared to the previous year,” SSC’s director wrote in a strategic report introducing the accounts.

SSC faced a globally volatile market together with the international challenges presented by Covid-19 and Brexit.

There were also “biological and environmental events which contributed to the disappointing performance”.

35,000-tonne harvest

SSC, which is owned by Faroese salmon farmer Bakkafrost, made revenue of £181m (2019: £200m) on a full-year harvest of 35,000 gutted weight tonnes of salmon.

The company achieved 4-star Best Aquaculture Practices (BAP) accreditation for all its processing plants and commenced a programme for RSPCA Assured accreditation.

A £31m investment programme included spending on connectivity, site infrastructure, freshwater treatment capacity and processing capacity.  

SSC benefited from a £2m tax refund, reducing its post-tax loss to £17.37m. the company’s post-tax profit in 2019, when it paid £3.68m in tax, was £15.8m.

Exports

The company made revenue of £61.7m (2019: £68.96m) in the UK last year, and £101.7m (£99.5m) from exports to Europe.

Revenue from North America dropped significantly from £21.9m in 2019 to £9.9m last year, and income from the rest of the world was £7.3m (£9.95m).

Staff numbers increased from 662 in 2019 to 714, but SSC’s wage bill dropped from £23.8m to £20.4m. Directors’ renumeration plummeted from £1.4m to £137,000, but parent company charges for director serices increased from £19,000 to £270,000.

SSC spent almost £1.1m (£612,000) on hire of plant and machinery, and £7.5m (£7.8m) in respect of the lease of wellboats.