AquaGen acquires 51% of AquaSearch ova

AquaGen AS has entered into an agreement to purchase 51% of the shares in the Danish-based breeding company AquaSearch ova ApS, one of the world’s leading suppliers of genetics for portion-size trout market.

The agreement was signed by Chairman of AquaGen, Odd Magne Rødseth (left) and CEO of AquaSearch ova, Torben Nielsen.

Fast growing market for portion-size trout market

Globally, portion-size trout is one of the fastest growing aquaculture sectors and has become an important commodity of animal protein. Production in 2016 was 650,000 tonnes, with annual growth of 5-7% over the last 3 years.

AquaSearch ova, established in 2006, is a leading global player in breeding and egg production of trout. From its headquarters in Billund, the company has developed a competitive product portfolio with a very cost-effective production and distribution from its 6 broodstock farms in Denmark. A very high level of bio-security enables the company to access all global trout markets.

Rainbow trout eyed eggs with the first hatched alevine.

Strengthens the focus on trout breeding in general

“Our association with AquaSearch ova represents an important strategic milestone for AquaGen. With this we get a new platform for growth and value creation, helping AquaGen to maintain and strengthen its commitment to trout breeding. Due to a limited market for large trout, many breeding companies in Europe and Chile have chosen to close down their breeding programs for trout. AquaSearch ova’s strong position within the portion-size trout sector completes our commitment to all farmed species of salmon and trout. There is a great potential for AquaSearch ova and AquaGen to gather interesting synergies through exchange of experience, cooperation on R & D and the use of joint technology platforms in the breeding work”, says Odd Magne Rødseth, Chairman of AquaGen

The head quarter of AquaSearch ova in Billund, Denmark.

Greater distribution of trout eggs

“This transaction is very positive for the trout industry, because it helps to provide advanced technology and research resources to more trout farmers around the world”, said Torben Nielsen, CEO of AquaSearch ova. “I’m glad that AquaSearch ova will be part of a group that has a long-term commitment to developing and distributing trout genetics. The ability to share leading knowledge and breeding technology within different species will strengthen the development necessary to meet the rapidly growing demand for seafood, and with the global reach of AquaGen and EW Group, we can further develop our global distribution to reach all important trout markets”, says Nielsen.