Outlook 2017: Siam Canadian MD Jim Gulkin : January 6, 2017
His firm looks to strengthen its import and distribution business in one country while launching in a powerhouse country come next year.
Kim Tran : INTRAFISH
Jim Gulkin, managing director at shrimp supplier Siam Canadian, tells IntraFish his expectations for 2017.
The company will be cautious as it goes forward into a future that includes Brexit and Donald Trump as US president.
What were the most significant developments for your business in 2016?
1) Currency instability as a result of Brexit and the US election causing difficulties particularly for UK and European importers as well as end users and sales in general.
2) Ongoing disease issues and other production problems in China, Vietnam, Thailand, Indonesia and India.
3) Thailand’s continued recovery from EMS [Early Mortality Syndrome] and its substantial recouping of its market share in US and Canada.
4) Siam Canadian Group sales again exceeded $300 million (€281.6 million) in 2016. 2016 was a record year for Siam Canadian in both turnover value and volume.
Looking ahead, what will be the most important developments in 2017?
1) I expect to continue to see production problems in all Asian producing countries to some extent. An underlying question is if any area or country might hit a catastrophic situation like EMS in 2012. More likely, various disease problems will increase and abate but nothing of seismic proportions will occur.
2) We will be watching the US very closely and will remain concerned going forward that existing protectionist measures to aid local US seafood industries may be bolstered or even new measures implemented. China may likely be the first casualty of this but other Asian and South American origin countries may be affected as well.
3) Continued fallout in the UK and European economies as a result of Brexit and the resulting instability (weakness) of the euro and Sterling.
What changes and developments do you expect your business to undergo next year?
1) We will continue to grow our import and distribution business in Thailand, which seems to be heading in the right direction.
2) We expect to begin our import and distribution business in China in 2017.
3) We will continue to grow our inter-branch trade, selling various frozen seafood items to and from our various branches.
4) We will again be present at all the major trade fairs and will continue to maintain our high profile in general. We are confident our business in general will continue to grow.