Thai Union Group has declined to comment on reports it is in talks to buy into Negocios Industriales Real , one of Ecuador’s largest seafood processors which exports to more than 25 countries.

The Thailand-based owner of tuna brands such as John West and Chicken of the Sea is rumoured to be on the search to expand its global reach in terms of partnership and acquisitions.

However, a spokesperson for the group declined to answer questions about a possible deal and told just-food “it doesn’t comment on market gossip”.

Thai Union has been on a corporate shopping spree in recent months. In March, Indian seafood processor Avanti Feeds announced it was selling a 40% stake in its frozen foods unit to Thai Union under a joint venture deal.

In May, Thai Union said first-quarter sales rose 9.3% to THB31.25bn (US$871m), which the group said was “primarily” the result of its acquisition of German canned seafood processor Rugen Fisch as well as organic growth.