Strong US, Canada sales driving Siam Canadian to record year : September 13, 2016
Neil Ramsden : Undercurrentnews
Thailand-based importer/ exporter Siam Canadian is on track to achieve a record year in both turnover and container volume, its founder Jim Gulkin told Undercurrent News.
During the first quarter of 2016, Gulkin had revealed that the firm’s 2015 turnover was down — at $280 million — due to “considerably lower shrimp (and other seafood) prices”.
However, he hoped 2016 would see a good increase, to more than $300m. The long-term aim is to improve on its 2014 $320m, and exceed $500m, over the next six years.
This could be achieved by expanding its seafood importing and distribution businesses.
“Our year to date USD turnover and container volume are the highest so far in our history,” Gulkin said in August 2016. “We will almost surely surpass $300m for 2016.”
2016’s increased turnover is being driven in large part by strong sales to an economically recovering US, he said, as well as good Canadian sales.
“It’s also election year in the USA. Historically and for no reason I can adequately explain, sales to the USA are always good during an election year,” he added.
Raw material prices have been “workable” — from multiple origins — and have translated to cost and freight selling prices which have been “very palatable for retail, foodservice, QSR and other market sectors”, he said.
Thailand’s recovery has also bolstered the groups sales in terms of retail, which is Thailand’s strong suit, said Gulkin. “Also, [there’s been] a trend towards larger sizes, which makes for a higher dollar turnover.”
Imports to Thailand — which Siam Canadian started after it was founded as an exporter from the Asian country, but which are rapidly becoming vital to its growth — continue to grow, on frozen fish, other seafood, and on frozen desserts too.
Also contributing to a strong year are increased sales of shrimp from India and Indonesia, to processors in Vietnam and China, as well as for distribution in China, he said. “Also trade of cephalopods, pangasius and other items are growing between our own offices.”
Meanwhile, the company is still in the process of establishing its China import office, which it told Undercurrent about earlier in 2016. Gulkin hopes it will be operational in early 2017.