Located in the north-western part of the country, close to the border with Hungary and Ukraine, this family-owned and run business is specialised for more than 30 years in the production and distribution of farmed fish, both to wholesalers and retailers – the latter are mostly hypermarket chains, as well as open markets, located in the big cities of the region. Fish is sold live or refrigerated.
Cyprinid cultivation is the most popular in Romania, including Piscicola’s, representing around 80% of the total aquaculture production. At Piscicola, common carp (Cyprinus carpio), silver carp (Hypophthalmichthys molitrix), crucian carp (Carassius carassius), bighead carp (Hypophthalmichthys nobilis), and grass carp (Ctenopharyngodon idella) are the main species produced. Meanwhile, catfish (Siluris glanis), pike perch (Stizostedion lucioperca) and pike (Esox lucius) are also farmed, albeit in smaller volumes.
Having invested over EUR550,000 in the construction of a modern processing unit equipped with the latest equipment including refrigeration units, the factory can process 1,000 – 3,000 kg/day of finished product (e.g. gutted fish, fillets, etc.) to the highest EU standards.
A promising business - from fish on ice to value added products
However, over the past years, a series of internal and external factors has caused the company’s production to gradually drop. Significant investments made during the last four years combined with high interest rates resulted in an unhealthy financial situation. At the same time the overall European economic recession resulted in the market shrinking making it more difficult to sell the production.
“We are looking for a strategic investor from the aquaculture and/or processing industries who is willing to work together with us” says Mr Ciprian Mitre, the young and dynamic manager of the enterprise. “I am convinced of the promising future of Piscicola’s business. I inherited a passion for farming from my father, a veterinarian and aquaculturist by education, and therefore earned a degree in fish farming from the Zootechnical University in Cluj-Napoca, after four years of study”.
|S.C. Piscicola S.R.L. Cehu-Silvaniei|
Str. Ferma piscicola nr.21
455100 CEHU SILVANIEI, Jud.SALAJ
Telephone: +40 744794424
Managing Director: Ciprian Mitre
Activities: Fish farming, processing, angling
Facilities: Ponds of 124 ha, processing unit, fish shop
Production: Common carp, Chinese carps, pike perch, pike
Volumes: 170 tonnes, of which 100 tonnes carp species
Customers: Hypermarkets, individuals, open markets
Potential to diversify into related areas
Despite the current financial problems Mr Mitre is convinced that a further investments will transform the currently stagnating business in to an economically viable activity. This will enable the current production to increase, as well as allow a diversification of activities, for example, in to the production of value added products (smoked fish fillets) and the manufacture of fish feed. A business plan that has been prepared for investors shows that the return on investment can be made in 4-5 years, at a profitability rate of about 25%.
Several other factors also make Piscicola an attractive investment opportunity: the knowledge of the national and international fish market, a large pond area which allows diversification in to other activities, such as leisure fishing, few competing fish farmers in the region, a state-of-the-art EU-certified processing facility where a great variety of fish species can be processed as per the customers’ needs. Last but not least, the company’s flat organisational structure – three family members are the main owners and managers – allows flexibility and rapidity in decision making and daily operations.