Fledgling Norwegian land-based salmon farmer Salmon Evolution has been granted NOK 96.8 million (€8.9 million/$10.6 million) in funding from the state-owned enterprise Enova SF.

Enova is owned by the Ministry of Climate and Environment and contributes to reduced greenhouse gas emissions, development of energy and climate technology and a strengthened security of supply.

The funding support from Enova is related to the ongoing construction of Salmon Evolution’s fish farm at Indre Haroy in Hustadvika, Norway, which in the first phase will produce approximately 9,000 metric tons annually.

The energy-efficient fish farm, involving a hybrid flow-through system, is based on utilizing large amounts of fresh seawater to produce 36,000 metric tons of salmon per year when fully built out.

"With this funding support, Enova is contributing to Salmon Evolution realizing tomorrow's solutions for salmon farming," said Hakon Andre Berg, CEO of Salmon Evolution.

"Our strategy of establishing a significant, low-emission salmon production on land, remains unchanged."

The Norwegian government’s ambition is to increase aquaculture production fivefold by 2050. At the same time, Norway aims to become a low-emission society with 90 percent lower greenhouse gas emissions.

As a result, Enova is helping the aquaculture industry to cut emissions and increase profitability with energy and climate measures.

"We believe that Enova's contribution will further strengthen Norway's position as a world-leading salmon producer," Berg said.

With the funding commitment from Enova, Salmon Evolution strengthens its financial position.

The company has attracted NOK 810 million (€74.8 million/$88.4 million) in equity 2020, in addition to NOK 50 million (€4.6 million/$5.5 million) raised in 2019.

Salmon Evolution is also currently working to secure a debt arrangement of NOK 396 million (€36.6 million/$43.2 million) from a consortium of three banks.

As of today, the company has cash holdings of NOK 677 million (€62.5 million/$73.9 million) (NOK 3,08 (€277.80/$328.20) per share) and NOK 40 million (€3.7 million/$4.4 million) in debt to financial institutions.

"In a low-emission society, production of goods must take place with low or no emissions and little energy," said Sveinung Rotevatn, Norway's Minister of Climate and Environment.

"Salmon Evolution, with support from Enova, shows with this project what is possible today. I hope others who have plans to run fish farming on land, will follow," he said.