VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA -- (Marketwire) -- 07/28/11 -- AgriMarine Holdings Inc. (TSX VENTURE: FSH)(OTCQX: AGMHF)(FRANKFURT: A2G) (the 'Company' or 'AgriMarine'), the leader in floating solid-wall closed containment technology and production for sustainable aquaculture, is pleased to announce that it has signed definitive agreements establishing AgriMarine Norway AS ('AgriNor') as the exclusive sales agent of its solidwall containment technology in Norway, Denmark, Sweden, Finland, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Iceland and Russia (the 'Territories'). AgriNor is 50% owned by AgriMarine, with the remaining 50% owned by ZED International Holdings ('ZED'), a Canadian company, and Midos AS ('Midos'), a Norwegian company, as to 25% each respectively. AgriNor's goals are to identify suitable locations in the Territories for the use of AgriMarine's technology, to establish concessions on those locations, and to place the Company's floating containment systems with suitable purchasers.
The agreements provide for the appointment of a board of directors and key managerial staff for AgriNor. The board will consist of five members; two appointed by AgriMarine, one from each of Midos and ZED, and one independent director agreed upon by all of AgriNor's shareholders. Sean Wilton and Phil Fitzpatrick will represent the Company on the board of AgriNor. Norwegian directors Geir Spiten, CEO of Midos AS, Leon Raubenheimer, President of ZED International Holdings Inc. and Geir Lislerud join AgriNor's board and bring significant expertise with both the Norwegian seafood industry and senior government relations to the company. In addition to the technology license, AgriMarine will provide a starting capital injection of $250,000 over the next four months, with subsequent funding for the initial concessions to be sourced by Midos and ZED.
Norway as a key salmon market
Norway is the largest producer of Atlantic salmon in the world, recording sales of 784,000 tonnes valued at NOK 31.4 billion (US $5.7 billion) in 2010. Although seafood is Norway's third largest export market, the industry is threaten by the negative environmental impacts associated with fish farming in open net cages.
AgriMarine's Innovative Solid-Wall Containment Technology
AgriMarine's solid-wall containment technology was developed to solve many issues faced by traditional fish farming practices that are used worldwide. AgriMarine's system reduces local pollution of the receiving water systems through the capture of waste feed/feces and facilitates improved feed conversions; mitigates environmental effects on wild fish through the prevention of escapes and avoids proximal contaminations such as marine parasites.
AgriMarine's cost competitive technology bridges the gap between traditional fish farming methods and high cost land-based tanks while producing fish sustainably with a negligible impact to the aquatic environment.
Licensing Strategy and Business Model
AgriMarine is following a two-pronged strategy to commercialize its solid-wall containment technology.
Firstly, the Company is applying its proprietary technology at its own farms to demonstrate its viability to produce sustainable salmon and trout for the premium market in both China and Canada. Each farm serves to validate the use of the technology in diverse surface temperature environments, in fresh or salt water conditions, and provides uncontestable evidence as to the economic viability and low environmental impacts of operation.
AgriMarine believes that it can demonstrate that its technology is not only environmentally friendly but that its use can also substantially improve a salmon farming operation's working capital and profitability due to:
-- reduced mortalities -- improved feed conversion ratio -- rapid growth -- mitigation of sea lice infestation effects - estimated annual losses to Norway's aquaculture industry due to sea lice damage range from NOK 500 million to 2 billion (US $92-362 million) -- healthier fish due to fewer diseases and stress
Secondly, with the establishment of AgriNor in Norway, AgriMarine will be taking the first steps in commercializing its solid-wall containment technology throughout the salmon-producing regions of Europe and the Nordic Countries. AgriMarine believes that licensing is key to rapidly deploying its technology in a capital-efficient manner and is placing a high priority on this endeavour.
To better focus on these core strategic initiatives in Europe, Sean Wilton will relinquish his duties overseeing AgriMarine's operations in Canada. Mr. Robert Walker has been appointed President of AgriMarine Industries in his place, assuming responsibility for the Company's operations in Canada.
AgriNor believes that as AgriMarine's solid-wall containment technology gains acceptance in Norway, that all other salmon producing areas such as Chile (the second largest producer of salmon in the world), Scotland, Canada and the Faroe Islands will follow suit.
AgriNor has already received a number of enquiries from the existing industry to set up R&D facilities in order to demonstrate the technology in Norway.
About AgriMarine Holdings Inc.
AgriMarine has developed and commercialized proprietary floating closed containment technology to produce salmon sustainably in its farms in China and Canada. The technology can be applied worldwide to the rearing of other finfish such as trout, tuna, and yellow croaker. AgriMarine's technology creates an optimal fish rearing environment, offers a better farm management system with added environmental benefits over net cage rearing practices and meets consumer and retailer demands for sustainable aquaculture.
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AgriMarine Holdings Inc.
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