Lithuanian Fish Processor Eyes Higher Sales, Scraps Belarusian Project
LITHUANIA – Lithuanian fish processor Viciunai is planning to expand its sales to some €129 million in 2016, an increase of 13 per cent compared with €114.4 million a year earlier.
While the group aims to expand its market presence both in the domestic and foreign markets, it recently decided to scrap its plans to launch a new fish processing facility in close proximity of Belarus’ capital Minsk.
Mindaugas Snicorius, the spokesperson for Viciunai, said that the company’s decision was due to a shift in the processor’s investment strategy and unfavourable business developments.
“The decision to abandon the status of a resident of the Minsk free economic zone (FEZ) was well thought-out and based on business logic,” Snicorius said, as reported by local news site Baltic-Course.com.
“Many changes have occurred both in the business and in the world over these three years. Our current business strategy is primarily to reinforce production in our existing factories.”
The company initially planned to shift a part of its production from its fish processing plant in Sovetsk, Russia, to the designed Belarusian facility.
Set up in 1991, the company says it is one of the largest producers of processed fish, surimi sticks and other products in Europe. Its products are sold in more than 57 countries worldwide. Viciunai consists of 80 companies located in 17 countries. The group is operated by a workforce of more than 8,000 employees at its 13 processing facilities which have an annual output of about 158,000 tonnes. These include plants in Lithuania, Estonia, Spain and Russia. Export sales are responsible for as much as 85 per cent of Viciunai’s revenues, according to data released by the group.
Viciunai is owned by local businessman Visvaldas Matijosaitis who also serves as the mayor of Kaunas, Lithuania’s second largest city.
Freelance journalist based in Warsaw, Poland