AMERRA acquires European aquaculture company

AMERRA Capital Management has acquired European aquaculture company Andromeda Group from Global Finance.

Agri-focused asset manager AMERRA Capital Management has acquired European aquaculture company Andromeda Group from private equity firm Global Finance for an undisclosed sum.

The vertically integrated aquaculture company has made a number of acquisitions since it was acquired by Athens-based Global Finance in 2006. In 2008 and 2009, the company acquired Spanish production companies Acuicola Marina and Niordseas. In 2010, Andromeda bought hatchery and nursery company Piscimar.

“Andromeda has transformed from a €30 million family company to a €100 million leading Mediterranean aquaculture company during our time as owner. We are comfortable that AMERRA with its industry knowledge and international network is the right owner to take Andromeda to the next level,” said Mihalis Madianos, partner at Global Finance.

Andromeda’s management group will retain a stake of less than 10 percent. AMERRA will continue to pursue a growth strategy for the company, partner Thor Talseth said.

Talseth, who has an extensive background in seafood and aquaculture finance, joined AMERRA in August 2015. His background may be a signal that more acquisitions in the space space are in the offing.

“I will continue to focus on investing in the international seafood and aquaculture industry,” Talseth told trade publication Undercurrent News when he joined the firm.

AMERRA has hired two executives to focus on private equity strategies since the start of 2015, when it employeed J D Heiskell executive Robert Hodgen, whose background is in grain and feed.

The firm was launched as a joint venture between investment manager M D Sass and Macquarie Financial Strategies in 2009 to provide financing to agriculture and metal companies in the Americas. It has $1.5 billion assets under management.

According to PEI Research & Analytics, AMERRA is currently raising its third agri-focused debt fund, targeting $750 million. Investors in that fund include Maine Public Employees Retirement System and Texas Municipal Retirement System, according to PEI data.

Agri Investor reported in summer 2015 that the firm had plans to launch a pure equity agri-focused fund, but AMERRA representatives declined to comment on whether a launch is imminent, citing SEC regulations prohibiting marketing of funds.

Global Finance is a private equity firm focused on growth investments in Southeastern Europe. Since 1991, the firm has raised more than €850 million across eight funds.