January 25, 2012

Goodwin Represents High Liner Foods in Acquisition of Icelandic Group’s U.S. and Asian Operations

Goodwin Procter client High Liner Foods, a leading value-added frozen seafood company, recently acquired Icelandic Group’s U.S. and Asian operations for approximately $232 million. Following the acquisition, High Liner is now the leading value-added seafood supplier in North America. Based out of Reykjavik, Icelandic Group is a frozen seafood supplier with operations in America, Europe and Asia.

The acquisition includes Icelandic USA’s processing plant in Newport News, VA, as well as subsidiaries that operate a processing plant in China and procure product from other Asian countries. In connection with the deal, High Liner is acquiring several brands and agreed to a seven-year royalty-free licensing agreement with Icelandic for the use of the Icelandic SeafoodTM brand in the United States, Canada and Mexico. High Liner also structured a distribution agreement with Icelandic Group ensuring that producers in Iceland will continue to have the same access to the U.S. market.

“In over 20 years working with High Liner, this is one of the biggest matters we’ve advised on,” said Goodwin Procter partner David Dietz. “We look forward to working with High Liner as they continue their growth and expansion into new markets.”

The Goodwin deal team was led by partners Dietz and Andrew Goodman and consisted of Franklin Logan, Dan Beauregard and Vladimir Jeune (Corporate) as well as Q. Scott Kaye, Jessica Gill and Mitchell Laufer (Leverage Finance), Gregory Bibler and Nathan Brodeur (Environment), Robert O'Connell and Achal Oza (Intellectual Property), Robert Hale and Daniel Doron (Employment), Kristina Wardwell and James Mattus (ERISA), Robert Kester and Sarah Fritsch (Tax), Eric Labbe (Real Estate), Christopher Holding, Todd Hahn and Kirby Lewis (Antitrust) and Kathryn Alessi Lundwall (Contractual Remedies).