Striving for excellence is a personal trait flowing through the genetic fabric of Dr. Timothy “Tim” Aberson and his family. It is most definitely one of the key characteristics that drive his personal quest for success in his many life ventures including his present role as head of Global Blue Technologies (GBT) investment division.
To date, Doctor Tim, as he is known within the GBT family, was instrumental in raising over $50 million to build and operate every component and affiliate of the GBT aquaculture complex at Taft, Texas. He has overseen and managed the investments flowing into the GBT family of companies.
Dr. Aberson’s venture into the world of multi-million dollar finance was serendipitous from the very start. He had absolutely no idea what awaited him when, on a lark, he joined a small group of friends travelling from the northwest corner of Iowa to the southern most tip of Texas. The friend who organized the road trip wanted to see a new type of shrimp farm being developed there. At most, Dr. Aberson thought he would enjoy nothing more from the nearly 1,400 mile trek than a few laughs and a chance to fish in the Gulf of Mexico.
He did go fishing.
What he did not expect was an experience that quite literally changed his life.
Dr. Timothy T. Aberson grew up on a small farm in northwest Iowa. The seventh of nine children, he learned the value of hard work and perseverance helping with chores on the farm from a very young age. An outstanding high school athlete (including a state championship in the 100m high hurdles), he earned both athletic and academic scholarships to Northwestern College in Orange City, Iowa where he earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in Biology as he continued his athletic career in football and track. He graduated Cum Laude with a Doctorate of Chiropractic degree from Palmer College of Chiropractic in Davenport, Iowa.
Dr. Aberson and his wife Michelle, a high school mathematics instructor who holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in mathematics from the University of Iowa and a Masters Degree in Curriculum and Instruction from Buena Vista University, reside in Paullina. Michelle is also a Manager for The Aquaculture Group and Vice President of Blue Fin Financing, the financing arm for Perciformes Group, LLC. They have two children. Kate graduated high school as class valedictorian and is currently a senior at Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa majoring in English, Music, and Education. She has earned the Kathleen Davidson and Ethel R. Taylor scholarships while at Drake and has studied in London and Beijing. Kate works in the university library and is active in band and Greek life. Ben also earned class valedictorian honors and was named the Iowa High School Athletic Association Class 1A Student Athlete Achievement Award winner. Ben is a freshman at Dordt College in Sioux Center, Iowa majoring in Engineering. He has earned the Van Klavaren Achievement Award and participates in band, track, and cross country.
Dr. Aberson’s Texas road trip proved a seminal life-moment.
His background in farming, studies in biology, and abiding interest in conserving Nature’s resources that germinated throughout his life came to full fruition in the small pilot aquaculture project he saw in Texas. Located on a scant five acres in Brownsville’s Port Isabel, the quarter scale model was both a life and a game changer. The shrimp it produced were impressive. Wolfgang Puck’s seafood supplier snapped up the entire first harvest.
Dr. Aberson’s “along for the ride” attitude became energized. He saw the potential of the GBT innovative technology for an investor, for the nation and for Nature. Once expanded to its full commercial potential, the unique approach could very possibly turn the U.S. from a deficit-ridden seafood importer to a global aquaculture competitor. Of equal importance, that same technology conceivably could give wild marine shrimp and fish stocks a real break from unsustainable commercial exploitation…if and only if the project got funded.
Every aspect of turning the pilot project before him into a commercial reality appealed to Dr. Aberson. It was a challenge. He became an investor and an advocate. Almost immediately he accepted the daunting prospect of raising tens of millions of dollars to construct and run the Global Blue operation with a simple “I can do that!”
Investing is not new to the Aberson family. Dr. Aberson’s first big investment was in himself when he opened his own chiropractic clinic. Then came his buy into a small chain of healthy alternative to fast food shops. Accepting and overcoming risk is part of his core persona. But, raising millions of dollars was a far bigger financial challenge of a magnitude he had never tried or even thought of doing.
In 2012, Doctor Tim took the lead putting together investment groups to secure the first and subsequent tens of millions of dollars for each phase of the GBT endeavor. Less than two years later, he sold his 21-year chiropractic practice and dedicated his energy and his family’s future to funding Global Blue Technology’s affiliated endeavors.
Phase One: Two production Modules housing 16 ponds, each pond capable of producing 20-25,000 pounds of huge, naturally raised shrimp plus the unique recirculating, no discharge water treatment technology at the heart of the system.
Phase Two: Completed funding for two more production Modules 3 and 4 adding an additional 16 ponds to the Texas aquaculture campus.
Phase Three: Sustainable Sea Products International, LLC, GBT’s in-house sales, marketing and distribution component.
Phase Four: Sea Products Development, LLC, GBT’s proprietary shrimp hatchery.
He also succeeded in funding, Perciformes Group, LLC. an R&D facility to apply the GBT technology to different species of premium, high value marine finfish never before raised via land-based aquaculture.
Dr. Aberson is finishing a $20 million raise to expand Sea Products Development, the Texas hatchery, build a satellite hatchery in Japan and establish a genetics development facility to selectively breed new lines of brood stock tailored for greater disease resistance and higher survival under the conditions unique to individual client countries.
Before turning his attention fully toward GBT’s international objectives, Dr. Tim will round out his domestic efforts by securing funding for a related venture that will, not may, save lives and make a difference in helping the environment. Dr. Aberson will soon launch an effort to fund the world’s only environmentally benign chitin production facility.
Few understand what chitin is much less what it does. That’s about to change on a national and global scale.
Chitin is the forgotten miracle by-product of the aquaculture industry. Today, for the most part and in spite of its intrinsic economic value, it is relegated to the waste dump when shrimp shells are tossed into the garbage.
Chitin is the building block of shrimp shells. It has unlimited, extremely vital uses thanks to its immeasurable characteristics. It’s biodegradable, antibacterial, antimicrobial, antifungal, antioxidant, non-toxic and hypoallergenic. Quality chitin and its derivatives are in high demand in medical, bio-tech, agriculture, cosmetics, health care, textile, and industrial applications as well as by the food and beverage packaging industries.
It’s used in blood-stemming wound dressings, surgical arenas, water and air purification, precious-metal extraction, cosmetics, and food and dietary supplements. Its potential, once the supply of high quality chitin increases, includes delivery systems for tumor-killing drugs that avoid damaging healthy cells; replacement bone and organ building scaffolding; crop production improvement; alternative energy; and biodegradable plastic eliminating the nightmare of plastic bottles and grocery bags littering every water and landscape.
Shrimp cast off their shells during natural growth molting. Their shells are considered waste by commercial processors and frenzied participants in “peel and eat” feasts who have no idea they are throwing out the gold standard of natural polymers. Chitin and its derivatives’ worth ranges from a few hundred dollars to tens of thousands of dollars per pound for the highest pharmaceutical grade. That is, only if you can extract it and turn it into usable form.
Funding the new extraction process Dr. Aberson will soon tackle, will open up the full potential of the “chitin economy.”
It’s an economy in its infant stages despite the fact that its current value is more than $ 60 billion dollars.
Dr. Aberson’s new challenge eliminates two hurdles keeping chitin from reaching its economic zenith. Chitin plants are literally forbidden in North America and Europe due to the harsh, toxic and polluting process employed. The end product from Asian countries with lax environmental standards is often of inconsistent quality. Further, the supply of raw materials – crustacean exoskeletons – is also sketchy.
Pairing a processing technology that is not only non-toxic but also employs a no-discharge recirculating system similar to that of the GBT aquaculture technology appears a perfect match. The raw material supply issue is also addressed as GBT can supply a constant source of quality shells.
Dr. Aberson’s career change has plenty to keep him busy.