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Laguna Bay offers $32 million for Australian oyster producer

The Fish Site
by The Fish Site
14 February 2022, at 9:23am

A subsidiary of Laguna Bay is on the cusp of acquiring Angel Seafood, which grows oysters in South Australia, after the directors of the latter unanimously recommended a $32 million takeover deal.

A boat floats in a turquoise sea beside numerus wooden stakes
An oyster farm in Coffin Bay

Angel, which farms in Coffin Bay, is notable as it as the first oyster producer in the world to achieve organic certification. The producer currently has the capacity to harvest up to 1 million oysters a year, but recently announced plans to double production.

The new agreement allows Laguna Bay subsidiary BidCo to purchase all of the shares in Angel, with the exception of 16 million held by CEO Isaac Halman. The asking price is $0.2 per share – a 60 per cent premium on the producer’s closing share price on 17 December 2021.

“The scheme is an attractive, all-cash transaction. The Angel Seafood board has unanimously concluded that the scheme represents a compelling outcome for our shareholders, customers, suppliers and staff,” Angel Seafood chairman Tim Goldsmith said in a stock exchange announcement.

“The price is a very tangible measure of the value and quality of Angel Seafood’s position in the industry, and our recent strong performance. At a significant premium, Laguna Bay’s offer provides Angel shareholders with certainty of value and the opportunity to realise their investment in full for cash.”

Thorney Investment Group, which holds 26.2 million AS1 shares, has also confirmed it would vote in favour of the scheme, as will CEO Isaac Halman. who currently holds 24.7 million shares.

The scheme implementation is now subject to the approval of shareholders, who can vote on the scheme in early May, as well as approval from the Australian Foreign Investment Review Board.