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South Africa - The Competition Appeal Court has ruled that the Oceana Group may include the pelagic fishing rights in its proposed acquisition of Foodcorp. The R400m deal involves Oceana acquiring Foodcorp’s fishing business, which consists of the business of catching, processing and selling deep-sea trawl hake, south coast lobster and pelagic fish. Excluded from the acquisition is Foodcorp’s west coast lobster and hake long-line fishing rights.

Oceana Group’s CEO, Francois Kuttel, said that in the absence of securing the pelagic fishing rights, the company could have not gone ahead with the deal.  The pelagic fishing rights were a commercial imperative for the acquisition to proceed.

“Over half of our canned pilchards are currently imported from 12 canneries we have established internationally. We now want to look at replacing some of these imports by using Foodcorp’s pelagic fishing rights.”

“We argued from the start that we were best placed to secure Foodcorp’s long term future and this has been a very long and arduous process. What is critical is the sense of security and certainty this now brings to the approximately 1 000 employees of Foodcorp."