Siam Canadian diversifies into meat trading as revenues rise : Sep 11, 2018
Neil Ramsden : UndercurrentNews
Asia-based frozen seafood supplier Siam Canadian Group has upped its interest in the frozen meat sector, and officially established a new entity, it announced in a press release.
The move comes as the company rides the wave of volatile shrimp prices and a turbulent global trade picture for seafood, though group managing director Jim Gulkin told Undercurrent News that 2018 year-to-date net revenues are up considerably.
The new division is headed by Justyna Popielska (pictured), who will be based in her hometown of Szczecin, Poland. As general manager of the division, she is tasked with driving the growth of the meat business.
“The objective of the new division is to quickly build a significant position in the meat industry, much in the same way that Siam Canadian has already realized in the frozen seafood sector,” said Gulkin. “I am confident Justyna will achieve this and we will aggressively continue to grow the meat division as we go forward.”
Popielska brings experience trading in a wide range of meat products, sourcing from a broad group of suppliers in South America, North America, Europe as well as Asia to established buyers in Asia and beyond, her new employer said. This, combined with Siam Canadian’s existing network of suppliers and customers, gives the meat division a strong base to build on.
Before joining Siam Canadian, she ran the Polish office of Towers Thompson, a UK-based meat supply group.
“Siam Canadian has a record of success proven over the past 30 plus years. Our current annual sales exceed $325 million, and I am confident that the new meat division and a European presence will help fuel Siam Canadian’s further growth and diversification into new markets,” Richard Williams, Siam Canadian’s director of group business development, added.
Gulkin has previously said he hopes the firm can reach $500m in sales, and he told Undercurrent he believes the firm should be there, or close, by 2021-2022.
“The potential impact of disruptions on trade caused by trade wars and other poorly-conceived and half-thought-out ideas are hard to predict. However, if China is the main target [of tariffs], it will not have a major impact on Siam Canadian.”
The firm’s China office does export to the US, but is more focused on other markets, he said. “If other countries such as Thailand, India, Indonesia, and Vietnam are targeted, then the impact will indeed be more significant.”
Siam Canadian’s bottom line for 2017 was “very healthy, but not significantly higher than previous years,” Gulkin said. “However, our year-to-date net revenues for 2018 are significantly higher than 2017.”
He has previously said that drivers for growth included expansion of its customer base, increased sales in existing markets, and further penetration into some of the newer markets, such as Asia, Central and South America and Africa.
“We have continued to focus on the expansion of our markets in Asia, Central and South America and Africa,” he said, by way of an update on this. “We are seeing positive results from this, and this is one of the factors for our increase in net revenues.”