Salmon Co revenues leap on back of exports growth

The Scottish Salmon Company (SSC) has revealed a leap in revenues and pre-tax profits on the back of soaring international demand for its produce.

Scottish Salmon Company has seen a 23 per cent jump in sales compared to the first quarter of 2018. Picture: Contributed
Scottish Salmon Company has seen a 23 per cent jump in sales compared to the first quarter of 2018. Picture: Contributed

Sales at the Edinburgh-based salmon producer, which has more than 600 staff and operates 60 sites across the west coast and the Hebrides, jumped to £53.5 million in the first quarter, up 23 per cent from the opening three months of 2018.

International sales accounted for 65 per cent of revenues in the period, a rise from 61 per cent in the previous year, and were largely driven by exports to North America and the Far East.

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The business hailed its ongoing site optimisation programme for increasing harvest volumes by 22 per cent to 8,725 tonnes, and recorded a 5p rise in revenue per kilo to £6.13.

SSC’s earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation rose from £15.2m to £20.2m, including a £2.7m uplift after the firm switched to using the IFRS 16 reporting standard from the start of the year.

Excluding the impact of IFRS 16, underlying operating costs of £4.12 per kilogram compared favourably to £4.23/kg in the same period last year.

The group upped its projected volumes for the full-year to 33,000 tonnes due to “strong biological performance” in the quarter, with an organic growth forecast of around 7 per cent and a target production volume of 45,000 tonnes annually by 2025.

The business is planning further investment and an “ambitious pipeline” of site development projects, building on a recent site optimisation in Loch Fyne, harvest station upgrades, and the acquisition of its new Applecross Kishorn facility.

SSC, a limited company and subsidiary of Jersey-based The Scottish Salmon Company plc, which is listed on the Oslo stock exchange, declared a dividend of 0.57 Norwegian krone (5p) per share.

It also announced the launch of a strategic review to “maximise value” for shareholders.

Chief executive Craig Anderson said: “We delivered strong results with good operational performance across the value chain and in positive market conditions.

“Our commitment to Scottish provenance continues to further strengthen the position of our brands, particularly in key export markets.

“We have a global perspective and robust long-term strategy to support growth to which driving exports is fundamental.

“We continue with our investment plan to optimise productivity and efficiency throughout our value chain and site development to support our ongoing growth.

“In light of this we are undertaking a review of strategic options as it is deemed to be in the best interests of all our shareholders.”