Aquaculture for all

Borneo Aqua Harvest Bhd eyes S. Korea

MALAYSIA - Borneo Aqua Harvest Bhd is the first Sabah-based company and the first integrated marine biotechnology company to be listed on Mesdaq market of Bursa Malaysia.

Borneo Aqua Harvest Bhd eyes S. Korea - MALAYSIA - Borneo Aqua Harvest Bhd is the first Sabah-based company and the first integrated marine biotechnology company to be listed on Mesdaq market of Bursa Malaysia.

Its prospectus was launched by the Sabah Chief Minister Datuk Seri Musa Aman in Sandakan last Saturday, in conjunction with its flotation exercise to raise a total of RM38.050 million through both its Rights Issue and Public Issue.

Borneo Aqua is issuing a total of RM25 million new ordinary shares at RM1.50 each, of which 22.5 million will be placed out to identified investors and 2.5 million for public subscription and that of eligible directors and employees of the group.

A statement said here Monday that the company was one of the few integrated marine biotechnology companies in Malaysia, which has been successful in the aquaculture industry.

Borneo Aqua's business activities are carried out by two wholly-owned subsidiaries, namely Plentiful Harvest Sdn Bhd which is involved in fish breeding, fish hatchery operation and fish rearing while Marine Terrace Sdn Bhd is into fish rearing only.

Meanwhile, Borneo Aqua was acknowledged as the first company in the country to have successfully mass produced fish fry of Marble Grouper, Malabar Red Snapper and Coral Trout Grouper for commercial purposes.

This was said to be an important achievement not just for Borneo Aqua but also for the fishery industry as most of the fish fry for rearing purposes in Malaysia were currently being imported from Taiwan and Indonesia due to the limitation of local supply.

Its other achievements include breakthroughs from its research and development (R&D) activities and experience of its marine biologists.

Among other things, it has successfully acquired technologies in artificial breeding, sex reversal process for Grouper species to control the optimal sex ratio in a cage for breeding purposes, artificial mass spawning, eggs management, hatchery activities and production of live feeds for larvae. Emphasising on R&D activities for continuous product enhancement and development plans, the company spends about 10 per cent of its proforma aggregate turnover on R&D.

Meanwhile, its marine biotechnology facilities are all strategically located in Sandakan, Sabah where the R&D and hatchery centres are based in its head office in Sungai Kampung Kayu.

Another R&D centre is in Pulau Berhala where its fish breeding and fish rearing activities takes place.

It said the company had also recently moved some of its fish rearing activities to Pulau Bai where further expansion on its broadstock culturing and construction of 300 new sea cages were expected for this year.

Realising the prospect of the marine aquaculture industry in Malaysia, Borneo Aqua said it planned to increase its capacity to handle mass production of fish eggs and produce sufficient high commercial value fish fry to be supplied to the local fish farmers.

The company is also committed to further improve the aquaculture industry by providing adequate training to smaller local fish farmers and has plans to provide fish rearing consultancy services in addition to providing technical support to its customers.

Borneo Aqua is currently looking into mass cultivation of other species of high commercial value fish by replicating the R&D success on some of the marine fish species.

It also plans to broaden its product base and enhance R&D capabilities through tie-ups with local or international universities and related organisations.

Borneo Aqua said it would also be conducting feasibility studies in various countries in the Asia Pacific region to develop strategic alliances with international wholesalers.

For the year-ended March 31, 2005, the company recorded a huge increase in its pre-tax profit to RM3.338 million from merely RM411,369 last year and was a huge improvement when compared to a loss of RM818.191 which it incurred in 2003.

Its revenue had also increased from RM1.649 million in 2004 to RM6.029 million in 2005.

Source: Borneo Aqua Harvest Bhd - 9th August 2005