SAN DIEGO, September 14, 2011 /PRNewswire/ --
Umami Sustainable Seafood Inc. (OTCBB:UMAM) ("Umami" or "the Company"), a holding company of fish farming operations supplying sashimi-grade Northern Bluefin Tuna to the global market, announces that AMERRA Capital Management, LLC ("AMERRA"), as agent on behalf of its managed funds and accounts, has agreed to supply Umami with a loan for working capital in the amount of $8.5 million. The loan will be funded in three tranches. The first of these was provided on September 7, 2011 in the amount of $5,080,000. The second and third tranches, in the amounts of $1,150,000 and $2,150,000, respectively, will be funded upon satisfaction of certain funding conditions including Umami's delivery of additional collateral to AMERRA. In conjunction with the loan, Umami has issued warrants to purchase 500,000 shares of the Company's common stock at $1.50 per share.
The proceeds have been used for the repayment of existing $3.1 million of the Company's debt, as well as for general working capital for growth and reinforcement of the Company's infrastructure at its Baja Aqua Farms facility in Mexico. Umami acquired Baja Aqua Farms in late 2010, essentially doubling the size of the Company's operations and biomass. Umami has sought to obtain medium-term financing to further enhance its biomass growth and infrastructure. The loan bears interest at a rate equal to one-year LIBOR plus 11% p.a., and secured with certain assets owned by Umami. The notes mature beginning in November 2011 with any unpaid amounts fully due by April 2, 2012.
Additionally, Umami and AMERRA are currently in discussions for a potential medium term revolving loan to start in 2012 with a maturity of up to three years. If finalized, these proceeds would be used to fund the further growth of Umami's operations.
Oli Valur Steindorsson, Umami's Chairman and CEO, said, "The receipt of this loan, along with the potential for additional medium-term funding, reduces Umami's reliance on related parties and could provide Umami with an opportunity for stronger growth in our Mexico operations over the next three years."
Craig A. Tashjian, Managing Director of AMERRA, said, "Umami has an interesting business model with healthy gross margins, yet the model requires a significant supply of working capital to maximize the value of its Bluefin Tuna farming operations. We are excited to be part of the solution that will assist Umami to manage its long-term biomass growth, feeding and sales programs in an effort to maximize its revenues and ultimately its market capitalization. We look at this as a small first step in our collaboration with Umami, all legal groundwork, due diligence and background checks for what should follows has already been done in this first step. We are optimistic that Baja Aquafarms will fulfill preset conditions needed to go to the next phase of the collaboration. "
About AMERRA Capital Management, LLC
AMERRA Capital Management, LLC is an investment manager and advisory firm based in New York. AMERRA focuses on directly originating commodity related transactions and provides a wide range of debt capital products. AMERRA's target investments are located in the Americas and across the full spectrum of agricultural commodities.
About Umami Sustainable Seafood Inc.
The Company owns and operates Kali Tuna, which is an established Croatian based aquaculture operation raising Northern Bluefin Tuna in the Croatian part of the Adriatic Sea and, as of November 30, 2010, Baja Aqua Farms, which is an established Mexico based aquaculture operation raising Northern Bluefin Tuna in the Pacific. The Company intends to become the leader in aquaculture for northern bluefin tuna by acquisition and internal growth. The growth of the Company will be founded on the sustainable management of resources and economically sound practices, seeking opportunities resulting from market consolidation and scientific progress in the industry. The Company also intends to continue its research into closed cycle farming technology for Bluefin tuna which has produced encouraging results. For more information, please visit http://www.umamiseafood.com.
Notice Regarding Forward Looking Statements
This press release contains projections and forward-looking statements, as that term is defined in Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. Statements in this press release, which are not purely historical, are forward-looking statements and can include, without limitation, statements based on current expectations involving a number of risks and uncertainties and which are not guarantees of future performance of the Company. There are numerous risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results and the Company's plans and objectives to differ materially from those expressed in the forward-looking information, including (i) adverse market conditions; (ii) any adverse occurrence with respect to the farmed seafood industry generally or the businesses of Kali Tuna and Baja specifically; and (iii) changes in the regulatory environment. Actual results and future events could differ materially from those anticipated in such information. These and all subsequent written and oral forward-looking information are based on estimates and opinions of management on the dates they are made and are expressly qualified in their entirety by this notice. Although the Company believes that the beliefs, plans, expectations and intentions contained in this press release are reasonable, there can be no assurance those beliefs, plans, expectations or intentions will prove to be accurate. Investors should consult all of the information set forth herein and should also refer to the risk factors set forth in the Company's Annual Report on Form 10-K filed on October 22, 2010, and other reports filed or to be filed from time-to-time with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
SOURCE Umami Sustainable Seafood Inc.