The Indian headquarters of the international company Benchmark Genetics has reported the hiring of Balachandar Jayaraman as its new Technical Sales Manager for India, who will now be responsible for sales and technical support in that Asian country and neighboring countries. The new Benchmark executive has more than 28 years of experience in the shrimp farming business in India, Bangladesh, Vietnam and Malaysia.
According to the company, coming from The Waterbase Limited, before joining Benchmark, Balachandar Jayaraman (Bala) held various positions of responsibility in commercial coordination and technical functions. The new Technical Sales Manager for India has an extensive sales and technical network, built on more than 28 years of experience in the Indian market.
Bala’s experience, along with his expertise in larviculture, maturation, hatchery, grow-out and shrimp broodstock multiplication operations, will be leveraged in his new position to better serve the interests and needs of Benchmark’s current and future customers.
An impressive resume
Balachandar holds a bachelor’s degree in biology, a master’s degree in business administration specializing in project management, a diploma in aquaculture and a post-graduate diploma in marine microbial technology (India). In his new position, Balachandar will report to Bruno Decock, operations manager for Benchmark Genetics‘ shrimp breeding program in Asia.
“With the emergence of new challenges in aquaculture, the solution must come from the hand of genetics, nutrition and environment. Breeding with genomic precision, providing advanced nutrition and environmentally friendly health products sets us apart and I am proud to be part of this team setting new benchmarks for the industry,” said Balachandar upon hearing the news of his appointment.
“We are very pleased to welcome Balachandar to the team,” said Oscar Hennig, COO of Benchmark Genetics Shrimp, “We are convinced that Bala’s knowledge, experience and skills, both commercially and technically, will contribute to the success of Benchmark and its customers in the region,” concludes Hennig.
Conversion of existing loan into a green loan
Some days before this announcement, Benchmark Genetics the company reported that it has successfully converted its existing NOK 190 million loan with Nordea Bank related to its Genetics salmon egg facility in Salten, Norway into a green loan. The new green loan remains as ring-fenced debt without recourse to the remainder of the Benchmark Group and has a marginally lower interest rate.
The conversion of the loan into a green loan required the Company to meet key ESG criteria, including water management and the use of sustainable raw materials from deforestation-free sources. Benchmark’s state-of-the-art, land-based production facility in Salten, Norway is designed for high biosecurity and high environmental standards. Access to salmon eggs with specialist genetic traits is a crucial first step in the value chain to produce sustainably-grown salmon.
Trond Williksen, Benchmark CEO, commented: “The conversion of our existing loan with Nordea into a green financing facility is a testament to Benchmark’s commitment to ESG and sustainability and the successful development of our salmon genetics infrastructure and practices. We will continue to utilize green finance where appropriate whilst furthering our ESG and sustainability aims. Benchmark’s commitment to sustainability is further underpinned by our Net Zero targets and the work underway to improve our energy efficiency and access to renewable energy sources.”
Benchmark Genetics is a leader in aquaculture genetics, present in every major aquaculture market and for a wide range of species. Their five in-house breeding programs are focusing on three main species: salmon, shrimp and tilapia. They are the leading provider of genetics services based on extensive experience from 30 applied breeding programs involving 20 species in 16 countries.
Benchmark Genetics brings together the companies Benchmark Genetics Norway AS, Benchmark Genetics Iceland H.F., Benchmark Genetics Chile, Spring Genetics and Benchmark Genetics Shrimp. Their breeding centers are located in Norway, Iceland, Chile, the USA, Brazil and Colombia.