Huron Capital’s Aquamar Strengthens Market Position with Acquisition

Purchase of Shining Ocean, Inc. adds significant scale, diversifies seafood market offerings

  • Addition of Shining Ocean further cements Aquamar as the second-largest surimi seafood producer in North America
  • Shining Ocean’s product portfolio will further diversify Aquamar’s surimi offerings and adds additional products to Aquamar’s sales mix

 

DETROIT, Mich. (Dec. 10, 2021) — Leading lower-middle-market private equity firm Huron Capital Partners (“Huron Capital”) announced today that Aquamar Holdings (“Aquamar”) has acquired Shining Ocean, Inc. (“Shining Ocean”). The transaction significantly increases the platform’s scale and further diversifies its seafood market offerings.

“We are excited to add Shining Ocean’s business to our portfolio,” said Aquamar CEO, Daryl Gormley. “With this strategic partnership, we significantly expand branded seafood products for our current customers and leverage our investments in innovation and diversification of the raw material supply across a broader footprint.”

Shining Ocean was previously a subsidiary of True World Group, a global conglomerate of seafood manufacturing and distribution. Founded in 1985, Shining Ocean is a top-five surimi manufacturer in the country.

“We couldn’t have found a better partner to shepherd our business than the team at Aquamar,” said Robert Bleu, President of True World Group. “The combination of Aquamar and Shining Ocean will greatly benefit our customers, and we wish them nothing but success going forward.”

“Shining Ocean has been a dependable performer for us for 36 years, and we will miss the team members from our group,” Bleu added. “However, this sale allows us to focus on our core food distribution business and our very successful retail concepts, including plans to launch the biggest Asian Food Hall in America in the coming year.”

The addition of Shining Ocean strengthens Aquamar’s existing surimi lineup, adds additional branded products, and provides new opportunities for innovation in the seafood market. Aquamar has strengthened its position at a time where consumer interest in, and consumption of, seafood remains robust.

“We continue to see growing demand in the seafood manufacturing and branded product spaces,” said Huron Capital Vice President, James Dickinson. “We look forward to offering Shining Ocean’s innovative products as we continue to grow the Aquamar platform.”

 

About Huron Capital

Founded in Detroit in 1999, Huron Capital is an operationally focused private equity platform with a long history of growing lower middle-market companies through our proprietary ExecFactor® buy-and-build investment model. We prefer complex situations where we can help companies reach their full potential by combining our operational approach, substantial capital base, and transaction experience with seasoned operating executives. An early pioneer of the buy-and-build approach, Huron Capital has successfully raised six private equity funds aggregating nearly $2.0 billion in committed capital and invested in over 240 companies, and our portfolio companies have employed over 11,000 people throughout North America. The Huron Capital buy-and-build investment model includes equity recapitalizations, family succession transactions, market-entry strategies, corporate carve-outs, and management buyouts of companies having revenues up to $200 million. Huron Capital targets both control and non-control equity stakes in fundamentally-sound companies that can benefit from the Firm’s operational approach to creating value. Huron Capital focuses on niche segments within commercial & industrial services, professional services and the consumer services sectors. For more information, please visit: www.huroncapital.com.

About Aquamar Holdings

Aquamar Holdings is a manufacturer of surimi seafood, producing and selling crab flavored seafood to food service, food manufacturing, and retail channels primarily in North America. Aquamar Holdings produces both frozen and refrigerated products, most of which are sold under the Aquamar brand name. The Company is one of the leading manufacturers of shred style surimi in North America, selling to restaurants/foodservice customers and major retailers. Huron Capital acquired the business in 2017. For more information, please visit: www.aquamarseafood.com/.

About True World Group

True World Group (TWG) is an investment company that owns seafood and Asian food culture businesses.  True World Foods, the group’s biggest business, is the largest distributor of fresh fish in North America and offers a complete array of sushi items to restaurants, with 22 distribution centers in the U.S., five in Canada, one in London and one in Madrid. TWG also owns retail businesses selling sushi, Japanese hot foods, Japanese groceries, and Japanese pastries.

 

Certain information herein may contain forward-looking statements which are provided to assist the reader in understanding the beliefs and opinions with respect to future opportunities as perceived by Huron Capital and others quoted herein. These statements are not guarantees of future performance and undue reliance should not be placed on them. Such forward-looking statements necessarily involve known and unknown risks and uncertainties, which may cause actual performance in future periods to differ materially from any projections or results expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. There can be no assurance that forward-looking statements will prove to be accurate, as actual results and future events could differ materially from those anticipated in such statements. The issuer of these statements undertakes no obligation to update forward-looking statements if circumstances or estimates or opinions should change except as may be required by applicable securities laws.