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Business is booming for shrimp tech startup

The Fish Site
by The Fish Site
11 February 2021, at 10:50am

XpertSea, an aquaculture tech startup that has introduced novel means for counting and trading shrimp, has added a wealth of financial experience to its management team.

Katie Sokalsky joins XpertSea following the successful launch of its data-driven marketplace and financial services in Ecuador © XpertSea

The Canadian company has recruited financial industry veteran Katie Sokalsky as president and COO. She joins XpertSea* following the successful launch of its data-driven marketplace and financial services in Ecuador, with more than 10 million pounds of shrimp traded in less than 10 months, 50 percent month-over-month increase in new ponds registered on the trading platform, and 10x revenue growth from Q1 to Q4 2020.

Previously responsible for all new product and retail transformation at Scotiabank, one of Canada's largest banks, Sokalsky has been hired to accelerate XpertSea’s rapid growth in Latin America and support the company’s expansion of its business model to Southeast Asia and India.

“Katie’s experience in digital transformation, financial services and traditional markets will help XpertSea grow our marketplace into new territories and develop new offerings,” said Valerie Robitaille, XpertSea’s CEO. “With her strategic and operational skills she will be key to building on our current momentum and scaling for our next phase of growth in transforming the $30 billion shrimp marketplace.”

"I was taken with XpertSea’s technology, the way they’re using it to change the lives of farmers, and the incredible results that has produced,” said Sokalsky. “I’m excited to work with Valerie and her team to build a global seafood exchange that meets the growing demand for high quality, sustainable protein while delivering positive environmental returns for our planet.”

In 2020 XpertSea launched the first data-driven marketplace that seamlessly connects shrimp farmers with a network of vetted buyers for seamless transactions, complemented by financing services that eliminate damaging delays and guarantee same day payment. “Our marketplace allows farmers to reach new buyers, while our fast payment service unlocks cash flow critical to their continuous operations," said Robitaille. “This streamlined experience in turn benefits processors and other buyers, and will improve transparency, efficiency and profitability from farm to fork.”

*Aqua-Spark has invested in both XpertSea and Hatch, which owns The Fish Site, but we remain editorially independent.