Thai Union purchases majority stake in Red Lobster

Thai Union, one of the Kingdom’s largest seafood companies, led a consortium last week that became the majority owners of Red Lobster, the American restaurant chain, after increasing its stake in the company by purchasing equities from Golden Gate Capital.

Thai Union’s vote of confidence in the American market comes at a time when many firms, both global and domestic, have been holding back investments because of the economic fallout of the coronavirus pandemic. The purchase also demonstrates Thai Union’s resilience during the global slowdown.

“We are thrilled to deepen our relationship with Thai Union, a long-term strategic supplier to Red Lobster and an investment partner for the last four years,” said Kim Lopdrup, Chief Executive of Red Lobster. “Our organization will also benefit from the tremendous international restaurant and hospitality expertise brought by Seafood Alliance.”

Seafood Alliance is the newly formed consortium consisting of Thai Union and other Thai and international investors. In 2016, Thai Union invested $575-million in Red Lobster, making the Thai company the largest shareholder in the American chain.

“As an anchor investor in Red Lobster since 2016, we are excited to confirm our commitment to the business, which reflects our utmost confidence in management and the company’s strategy of serving top quality seafood for a great value,” said Thiraphong Chansiri, President and Chief Executive of Thai Union.

Thai Union is among the Kingdom’s most progressive corporations, winning global awards for sustainability. The company has long been implementing business reforms and formed alliances with other retailers and international agencies to improve traceability and clean up supply chains.

The World Benchmarking Alliance ranks Thai Union number one in its Seafood Stewardship Index.

Thai Union is known for canned tuna brands such as John West and Chicken of the Sea.

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