When the parent company of grow-out giant SalMar bought equipment supplier Steinvsik for 700 million kroner (€74 million), they were buying the life work of one Bjoern Apeland.
Mr. Apeland had years ago bought the assets of Steinsvik — then a bankrupt supplier of equipment to the offshore industry — and turned it into a major aquaculture supplier. He sold at year-end 2016, just as many were going bankrupt in offshore service and turning to aquaculture to recover those large margins.
“I have seen how it’s gone for others (in the offshore market),” Apeland told Norwegian Dagens Naeringsliv. “Look at the shipowners. Suddenly they’re sitting there without a hook to hang their hat on.”
Steinsvik’s former owner said the company has great potential for more growth, but that the deep pockets of Kverva, a major SalMar shareholder, were needed. After 13 years of growth and transformation from energy to aquaculture, Steinsvik is now a major supplier of technology and systems for aquaculture, earning 108 million kroner (€11.4 million) on revenues of 850 million kroner (€89.8 million).