Harris Williams & Co. Advises Wanchese Fish Company on its Sale to the Cooke Family’s Cooke Seafood USA, Inc.

June 12, 2015

Harris Williams & Co., a preeminent middle market investment bank focused on the advisory needs of clients worldwide, announces the sale of Wanchese Fish Company (Wanchese) to Cooke Seafood USA, Inc. (Cooke). Wanchese is a leading harvester, distributor and value-added processor in the attractive global seafood industry. The transaction was led by Tim Alexander, Brant Cash and Marshall Printy of Harris Williams & Co.’s Consumer Group.

“It has been an honor working with the Wanchese team as they have done an exceptional job growing their business around the globe, innovating new value-added seafood products and generating strong financial results,” said Tim Alexander, a managing director at Harris Williams & Co. “By becoming part of the Cooke family of companies, we expect Wanchese to continue expanding its position in the attractive global seafood industry and carry forward the legacy started by Malcolm Daniels nearly 80 years ago.”

“Wanchese represents another successful transaction for Harris Williams & Co. in the food and beverage sector this year,” added Brant Cash, a director at Harris Williams & Co. “Wanchese is a great strategic fit for Cooke, as both companies share an enthusiasm for producing high quality seafood and a commitment to maintaining their family-owned company culture. We were excited about helping facilitate this important step in Wanchese’s growth.”

Wanchese, founded in 1936, serves the food service, retail and ingredient industries worldwide. The company’s fleet of 15 vessels and accompanying fishing permits provide Wanchese with unique access to wild-caught seafood from multiple, diverse fisheries off the Atlantic coasts of North and South America. In addition to the company’s harvesting operations, Wanchese sources, processes and distributes seafood products from suppliers around the world in order to provide its customers one of the broadest offerings in the industry.  Wanchese is based in Suffolk, Virginia and maintains operations in North America, South America and Europe.

Cooke, established in 1985 as Kelly Cove Salmon by Gifford, Michael and Glenn Cooke, now has salmon operations in New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, Newfoundland, Maine, Chile and Scotland as well as sea bass and sea bream operations in Spain. Today, Cooke has more than 2,700 employees and processes and sells more than 115,000 metric tonnes of salmon and 24,000 metric tonnes of sea bass and sea bream annually. The company’s processing, sales and marketing division is True North Salmon Co., and its products are marketed under the True North Salmon and Jail Island Seafood brands. Salmones Cupquelan salmon is marketed under the Heritage Salmon brand.

Harris Williams & Co. (www.harriswilliams.com), a member of The PNC Financial Services Group, Inc. (NYSE:PNC), is a preeminent middle market investment bank focused on the advisory needs of clients worldwide.  The firm has deep industry knowledge, global transaction expertise, and an unwavering commitment to excellence.  Harris Williams & Co. provides sell-side and acquisition advisory, restructuring advisory, board advisory, private placements, and capital markets advisory services.

Harris Williams & Co.’s Consumer Group has completed more than 100 transactions in recent years across a variety of verticals, including branded consumer products; consumer services; food, beverage, and agribusiness; and restaurant and retail.  For more information on Harris Williams & Co.’s Consumer Group and other recent transactions, visit the Consumer Group’s section of the Harris Williams & Co. website.

Investment banking services are provided by Harris Williams LLC, a registered broker-dealer and member of FINRA and SIPC, and Harris Williams & Co. Ltd, which is authorized and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.  Harris Williams & Co. is a trade name under which Harris Williams LLC and Harris Williams & Co. Ltd conduct business.