Newly formed company SalMar Aker Ocean has new CEO

The aquaculture company SalMar Aker Ocean has appointed Roy Reite to be its new CEO. The establishment of SalMar Aker Ocean AS was formalised in mid-November 2021. By 2030, the aim of their owners for SalMar Aker Ocean to be sustainably producing 150,000 tonnes of salmon per year at fish farms located in the open ocean. The company’s co-owners are SalMar and Aker.

“Roy Reite has valuable experience of international industrial entrepreneurship and the Norwegian finance sector, and he has in-depth knowledge of the coastal culture. This provides the insight that is important and necessary to realise SalMar Aker Ocean’s ambitions”, says Atle Eide, who chairs SalMar Aker Ocean’s board of directors.

For decades, Reite has worked on major construction projects in the maritime and offshore sectors, and for the past three years he has led the seafood company Fjordlaks, they explain in a press release.

For 20 years, Roy Reite held key executive positions in Aker Yards and was CEO of what is now the shipbuilding group Vard. He has considerable experience of leading both listed and unlisted companies and has helped to build a business comprising more than 10,000 employees and generating annual revenues of NOK 12 billion.

In 2019, he took over as CEO of Fjordlaks.

“In SalMar Aker Ocean I see a business with a considerable growth potential, and that is a powerful motivator for me. The company has determined and knowledgeable owners with considerable financial resources behind them, as well as a highly skilled workforce and concrete plans to create a new Norwegian industrial success story with international ambitions. And underpinning it all is the belief in – and need for – sustainable production of healthy seafood,” says Reite.

Pioneering facility

SalMar Aker Ocean has already completed two successful production cycles at its pioneering Ocean Farm 1 facility, which is located in a weather-beaten and exposed area of sea off the Trøndelag coast. The experience gained here is being incorporated into a new and bigger version, Ocean Farm 2, which is currently under development.

The company has also applied to the authorities for permission to site the world’s first fully offshore fish farm, called the Smart Fish Farm, in the sea off Central Norway, approx. 50 nautical miles west of Frøya.

If its production targets are accomplish, SalMar Aker Ocean will be one of the world’s largest salmon producers as early as 2030. Along the way, huge opportunities will be created for a Norwegian supply industry in transition.

SalMar Aker Ocean has documented ripple effects in the form of thousands of industrial and engineering jobs in Norway, and will take the lead in ensuring sustainable growth on the salmon’s terms.”

The company will initially focus on establishing offshore fish farming in Norwegian waters, for which a new regulatory framework will be required. SalMar Aker Ocean will work together with the Norwegian authorities, the aquaculture industry and other interested parties to establish such a framework.

With the appointment of Roy Reite, SalMar Aker Ocean’s new management team is starting to take shape, they assure in the press release. It has previously been announced that Trine Sæther Romuld, currently CFO at SalMar ASA, will become SalMar Aker Ocean’s CEO.

In November last year it was announced that Kristine Hartmann had been appointed as Development Director. She took up her position on 1 January 2022. Before joining the company, Hartmann was COO of C4IR Ocean, a foundation established by Aker and the World Economic Forum (WEF).

From 2011 until 2020 she played a key role in the expansion of the biotech company Aker BioMarine.

In addition, Marianne Halse took up the position as Head of Fish Health at SalMar Aker Ocean in May 2021. Halse has a degree in aquamedicine and was previously Head of Fish Health at SalMar ASA. Before that, she headed the fish health department at Havbrukstjenesten AS (now Åkerblå), which she co-founded.

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