M&A Report: Shrimp sorting leader Laitram Machinery continues growth

April 22, 2024

G.F. Gay Le Breton And Liam Norton, Chaffe & Associates Inc.//April 15, 2024


Elmwood-based Laitram Machinery announced in March that it has agreed to acquire Martak Ltd.’sshrimp peeling business. This significant move promises to improve the shrimp processing industry’s landscape, especially for the Cold-Water Shrimp market.  Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

James Lapeyre, President of Laitram Machinery, commented, “We believe that by joining these leading operations, both companies can focus on their respective core competencies, and the resultant combination will provide the scale and resources that will better serve our customer base in the years to come.”

The move, which sees Laitram purchasing substantially all of the assets of Martak’s shrimp-peeling business line, primarily focuses on shrimp production in Ecuador, where Laitram has several sorting operations, according to Laitram’s Marketing Director Karen Quaas. Iceland-based Martak will focus on their other seafood-related operations, such as processing.

Laitram founder J.M. Lapeyre famously invented the first automatic shrimp-peeling machine over 70 years ago. More recently, Laitram Machinery has pursued growth and a global presence by focusing on its value proposition: efficiency. At a recent Seafood Expo North America, Quaas explained in an interview with SeafoodSource.com, “The industry is struggling, so getting those extra cents on the pound is going to be really valuable moving forward; cash flow is going to be a key indicator as to how shrimp companies are performing this year.” These efficiency savings are vitally important in a time when shrimp prices are nearly at a decade low.

Laitram Machinery is a subsidiary of Laitram Corporation, a global manufacturing leader across multiple industries, with over 3,800 employees, over 1,300 actively held patents, and 11 locations worldwide.  Its biggest division is Intralox.

March also saw Danos Group Holdings purchase Houma-based Performance Energy Services (“PES”) from publicly-traded Quanta Services, Inc.  A provider of industrial services to the oil & gas industry, PES will operate as a subsidiary and join Danos LLC as part of the Danos family of companies. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Paul Danos, CEO of Danos Group Holdings, said, “I’m excited about the opportunity to work with PES. Both organizations are rooted in strong values and a culture of caring for employees. Growing our project services capabilities means we can better support and serve our customers and provide more development opportunities for our employees.”

Danos Ventures facilitated the transaction on behalf of Danos Group Holdings, a third-generation, family-owned business headquartered in Gray, Louisiana. Led by Eric Danos, Danos Ventures is dedicated to building a broad energy-sector portfolio spanning traditional oil and gas and energy transition opportunities.

The PES acquisition is Danos’ second in the past year, as the family continues to execute a growth strategy.  In March 2023, Danos acquired the Gulf of Mexico offshore labor supply operations of the John Wood Group.

Finally, two affiliated Louisiana companies in Broussard have announced an agreement to merge with Texas-based CCI Inspection Services.  GIR Solutions and GIR Mechanical Integrity are set to merge with the industrial inspection company in a deal to create an industrial services powerhouse. The GIR companies specialize in a wide range of services pertaining to mechanical integrity including non-destructive testing, various inspections, and data management; CCI Inspection is a top-tier company offering coating and corrosion inspection and mitigation solutions.

Together, the entities will form Allco Solutions, LLC. The companies announced that the new entity will be led by Marlin Lester in the CEO role. Regarding the transaction, Lester remarked: “Allco is more than just a merger, it’s a catalyst for change. By offering a comprehensive suite of inspection services, we’re empowering our clients to thrive in a competitive landscape, while driving industry-wide transformation.”

G.F. Gay Le Breton is managing director for Chaffe & Associates Inc., responsible for the corporate finance activities of the firm. Liam Norton is a corporate finance analyst with the firm. Investment banking services are provided by Chaffe Securities Inc., member FINRA/SIPC. For more information, visit https://chaffe-associates.com.