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Phase 2 of Atlantic Sapphire's Bluehouse under construction. Photo: Atlantic Sapphire.
Phase 2 of Atlantic Sapphire's Bluehouse under construction. Photo: Atlantic Sapphire.

Norwegian salmon farmer Nordlaks is to invest NOK 150 million (US$15.3m) in a share issue by Florida-based on-land salmon producer Atlantic Sapphire, according to a market announcement by Atlantic Sapphire today.

The private placement of new shares will raise approximately $125m which Atlantic Sapphire said will fully fund estimated remaining equity financing of Phase 2 of its Bluehouse facility at Homestead, Miami.

The proceeds will also be used for the repayment of a $25m debt facility, and for general corporate purposes.

25,000 tonnes per year

Atlantic Sapphire said completion of Phase 2 will take the company to an estimated total annual harvest level of 25,000 gutted weight tonnes in the US.

The current Phase 2 capital expenditure estimate is $275-300m, of which $70m has been invested.

The private placement is directed towards Norwegian and international investors. Along with Nordlaks, other companies that have pre-committed to apply for, and will be allocated, shares are:

  • Norsk Landbrukskjemi AS, the investment company of Nordlaks chairman Kjell Bjordal, for NOK 12m
  • Hotels group Strawberry Equities AS, for the NOK equivalent of $12.5m
  • Property group Joh Johannson Eiendom AS, for the number of shares corresponding to ~4.5% ownership post private placement (on current levels, the NOK equivalent of approximately $8.6m).

A number of Atlantic Sapphire directors have also pre-committed to buying shares.