Agrosuper's employees are likely to be joined by those of AquaChile in the near future. Photo: Salmonexpert.

Agrosuper plans $403m finance bid to be world No.2

Agrosuper, the Chilean company seeking to become the world’s second-largest salmon farmer by acquiring AquaChile, has called an extraordinary meeting of shareholders to approve plans to raise US$403 million to help fund the deal.

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Luis Felipe Silva, legal manager of Agrosuper, informed Chile’s Financial Market Commission that the company’s board agreed to call the meeting for next Monday, January 14.

Last August Agrosuper agreed to purchase 67% of AquaChile from its majority shareholders and, at the same time, launch a public share offer to acquire up to 100% of the company. The whole deal is worth $850m.

Series of acquisitions

The takeover will make Agrosuper the biggest salmon farmer in Chile, with an annual production volume of 230,000 tonnes - nearly 30% of the Chilean industry’s output and greater than the entire output of Scotland and Ireland combined. It will be second in volume terms to Norwegian giant Mowi.

The deal will also mark the culmination of a series of acquisitions.

In May last year, AquaChile acquired the whole of Salmones Magallanes for a value of US$255m, while Friosur accepted the offer of purchase of its salmon division by Los Fiordos for US$229m.

Agrosuper began life as a company selling eggs in 1955 and has expanded into chicken, turkey, pork, salmon and processed foods.

It employs more than 13,000 people directly and another 10,000 indirectly.