Premier has been in existence since 1952 and has four operating divisions, two subsidiary companies and a number of joint venture operations. Premier is a vertically integrated Group which specialises in the harvesting, processing and marketing of fish and fish-related products.
Premier and its subsidiaries hold medium- to long-term fishing rights in west coast rock lobster, south coast rock lobster, small pelagics (anchovy and sardine), hake deep-sea trawl, longline and squid. In addition, Premier owns an abalone farm and invests in organic agriculture through the Seagro range of products.
The Premier Group is the largest black-owned and controlled fishing company in South Africa and aims:
- to implement innovative procedures within the value chain to increase efficiency in line with environmental best practices, thereby reducing their carbon footprint;
- to invest in reliable technology which allows the Company to reduce mortalities of live lobster kept for the export market, therefore assisting in obtaining the best market price;
- to develop all its employees;
- to assist small businesses to grow and achieve their full potential; and
- to ultimately deliver sustainable returns to all stakeholders.
2017 OPERATIONAL PERFORMANCE
During the year under review, the Premier Group delivered excellent growth in operating earnings. Despite the strengthening of the rand against the US dollar, Premier managed to increase its operational profits by 30% as compared to the prior year.
The increase was as a result of tight cost controls in all of their operations as well as improved operational efficiencies through more efficient catch planning and improved pricing across all their divisions.
The abalone division increased its operating profits for the year under review and significantly increased its stock holding, which positions it well for the expansion of the farm going forward.
The Premier Group listed on the main board of the JSE on 2 March 2017 and was able to raise capital of R526m on the listing date through the issue of 117m new shares. The listing only had an effect on their financial performance for six months of the financial year. The capital raising strengthened their balance sheet with additional cash reserves that will be utilised on their main capital projects – abalone farm expansion and the acquisitions.
* Note: The season nature of the fishing industry does not tie in with the financial year. For more information on their listing visit: www.premierfishing.co.za.
VISION 2020 VISION – PREMIER’S CONTRIBUTION
Following the strategic planning session held in 2015 which entailed an analysis of the business with the primary objective of having focused and aligned efforts across the business to deliver on its long-term goals, a five-year strategic plan to the year 2020 was implemented. The strategic plan has clear deliverables, strategic actions for each strategic lever, as well as detailed clear time frames.
Below is the high-level outline of their Vision 2020 Vision strategic goals:
- Expansion of the abalone farm and capital expenditure in their underlying businesses to improve production and revenue
- Drive an efficient cost base
- Construct/acquire a processing facility
- Product diversification to further penetrate foreign markets – procurement of fish species for local and international markets and enhanced marketing capacity
- Continuous growth of outside quota holders
- Increase enterprise development initiatives
- Acquire a canning facility
- Acquire another fishing business
- Further explore green energy alternatives with the emphasis on the efficient use of water and electricity while exploring green alternatives
2017 Achievements to date include:
- Revenue increased to R411m from R402m in 2016
- EBITDA increased to R79m from R78m in 2016
- Commenced with the expansion of the abalone farm through a phased approach
- Implemented a centralised procurement for the entire Group
- Increased factory utilisation through the newly established trading operation
- Installed a fully operational in-house clinic at the abalone farm
PROSPECTS AND FUTURE OUTLOOK
Premier is well positioned for growth over the next two years to further unlock shareholder value.
The following prospects have been identified in reaching their Vision 2020 Vision:
- Abalone farm – 150 tonne production capacity is expected to be installed by the end of the 2018 financial year
- A fully functional canning facility is to be constructed at the abalone farm by March 2018 with in-house canning to commence from April 2018
- Approximately 50 new jobs will be created at the abalone farm by the end of 2018 financial year
Premier has operations in Port Nolloth, Northern Cape, Western Cape, Overberg Region, Humansdorp, Saldanha Bay, Hout Bay, the USA, Asia, and Europe.
Through their various business activities Premier offers the following products and services: sales, marketing and production of west coast rock lobster, south coast rock lobster, abalone, small pelagics, canned fish products, longline hake, squid and Seagro (organic fertiliser).
Detailed information about Premier Fishing and Brand Ltd’s business model, stakeholders, risks and governance is available on the website at www.aeei.co.za.