Attawapiskat Resources Inc. corporation of the year
Attawapiskat Resources Inc.’s Steve Hookimaw accepts the NADF Corporation of the Year award.
The 2012 Nishnawbe Aski Development Fund corporation of the year was recognized for successful investments in camp and catering services, a cell phone company and the recent acquisition of a security company.
“Attawapiskat Resources is still fairly young, but we already have a growing record of business development that is improving opportunities for Attawapiskat First Nation members,” said Steve Hookimaw, board chairperson for Attawapiskat Resources Inc. “We are also contributing to the economy of northern Ontario as a whole.”
One of ARI’s companies, Attawapiskat Catering Limited Partnership, currently has an $8 million contract with DeBeers Canada to provide camp and catering services at the Victor Diamond Mine. The company employs about 100 people, including about 33 employees from Attawapiskat and about 42 Aboriginal employees mainly from James Bay coastal communities.
“Over the last number of years, Attawapiskat Resources has been on a path of rebuilding an economy that was in Attawapiskat many years ago,” said Bob Dickson, ARI’s CEO. “We now own a number of companies, including a catering company. We own a security company in Timmins and have a small communications firm as well as part of our umbrella of companies.”
Advanced Security, which employs about 130 people and has a 25-year positive track record in industrial and commercial security, was acquired earlier this year.
Attawapiskat Cell Phone Services Ltd. began providing 2G cell phone service earlier this year in Attawapiskat.
Dickson said ARI is always working on plans for the different companies.
“We want to see them grow and continue to succeed and employ people and return investments to the community,” Dickson said. “But we’re always on the look to see what is out there to pick up.”
ARI currently employs two community members at its office in Attawapiskat. The company has also generated contributions of about $2.2 million to the Attawpiskat First Nation Community Trust and provided about $100,000 to support community members in need.
“It is really beneficial to have an organization such as Attawapiskat Resources Inc. in our community,” Hookimaw said. “We have been very successful.”
ARI was originally developed in 2005 to represent the public business and economic interests of Attawapiskat and its members. Hookimaw also said the company was developed to develop contracts with DeBeers Canada.
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