The Scottish seafood processor bought the two plants in August 2002 after Albert Fisher called in the receivers.
Macrae ditched the company’s £16m-a-year coated fish business to focus on chilled, value-added seafood products. Since then, turnover at Fraserburgh has increased, with the factory expected to reach profitability for the first time this year. Macrae reported pre-tax profit of £3.9m in the year to September 2003, up from £3.6m a year earlier. Sales were up 60% to £78m.
The company predicted sales of £88m and pre-tax profit of £5.8m for the coming year, driven by new product development in sectors including tuna, Alaskan salmon and shellfish. “We see good opportunities in developing shellfish products for the multiples,” said chairman Bill Hazeldean.