The acquisition will enable Thai Union to expand its frozen shrimp market, which is one of the bread-and-butter business groups of Thai Union.
Waiyat Paco Lee, financial controller of Thai Union, told FoodNavigator-Asia that the alliance would help to improve their frozen shrimp business.
“The investment means that we can make use of their facilities of its frozen shrimp factory and combine our resources and labour to save costs,” stated Lee.
“Once we start work together, we can improve our procurement resources to buy up to 600,000 shrimps in the Thailand which makes up about 20% of the total market value.”
Thai Union is still relying heavily on its canned tuna products and frozen shrimp business, its flagship products, exporting to the US, Japan and Europe.
Canned tuna makes up about 50% of the group’s business and frozen shrimp stands at 20%.
About 90% of its business comes from exports but the company aims to expand its regional business to Laos, Cambodia and Malaysia
Thai Union Group also hopes to grow its domestic business in the Thai frozen food and ready-to-eat food market, which includes frozen dim sum and sushi.
One of the business highlights of 2012 would be its pet food business, the company said, noting it is building a factory for pet food production in the US – which when ready next year, will lead to “dramatic growth in pet food”.
Business has been growing steadily for Thai Union and Lee expects that trend to continue with 20% growth in 2012. “We are lucky as we have not been affected by the recent floods in Thailand nor impacted by the European financial crisis,” he said.
He said the stability of Thai Union’s business stems from the fact that its business provides affordable staple protein food towesterners, especially canned tuna. The growing frozen shrimp business is also providing a safe haven for the company’s business.