Proud Sponsor: Tools & Financing for Aboriginal Business

Tools and Financing for Aboriginal business

Last month, Paper Excellence sponsored a Tools & Financing for Aboriginal Business (TFAB) session. TFAB sessions are run by the Council for Aboriginal Business (CCAB) and provide practical tools, training and networks to help Indigenous entrepreneurs grow their businesses.

During the session, panelists Chief Ian Campbell, Hereditary Chief of the Squamish Nation, and Rory Richards, CEO of Nuqo Modular shared their invaluable experiences, strategies, and insights. Richards spoke of the barriers she faced as a female business owner in the construction industry running an Indigenous-owned business. She recounted a story where the Squamish Nation stuck by her company even though the government program approving the Squamish Nation’s housing project asked them to secure a different construction firm. It was one of her company’s first jobs and getting it started on their way. The moral of the story: Great things can be achieved when we work together.

 “This event was an excellent opportunity to meet some of the local Indigenous businesses who could support our company’s operations through our new Indigenous procurement policy,” said Kim Lefebvre, Manager, Indigenous Fibre Partnerships. “We appreciated the networking format that CCAB offered, which provided ample opportunity for making new connections. Several Paper Excellence reps attended to discuss business opportunities as well as the company’s new Indigenous Procurement Policy with those who attended. We talked to other guests who also spoke highly of the event and found it well worth attending.”

Our procurement policy provides guidelines for introducing Indigenous business participation into Paper Excellence’s business supply chain, and to promote and support Indigenous entrepreneurship, employment opportunities and economic development.

In alignment with PE’s Indigenous Relations Policy, and Canada’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission Calls to Action #92, Paper Excellence is committed to supporting economic reconciliation through business development opportunities and increasing partnerships with Indigenous groups in our supply chain.

We will achieve this through:

  • Working closely with Indigenous communities and businesses
  • Identifying current barriers to participation in our supply chain
  • Adopting strategies to give priority to the growth and success of Indigenous businesses

At both the corporate and operational levels, the approach to this policy will include efforts to ensure that Indigenous businesses are provided measurably enhanced opportunities throughout the procurement process.

“Our new procurement policy roll out couldn’t have been better celebrated than in this CCAB organized event. We congratulate fellow co-sponsors the CPA of BC, and warmly acknowledge all the Indigenous contractors and suppliers who made it out to network with us, in what we foresee as a great first step for our business program,” said Lana Wilhelm, Director of Indigenous Relations.

Thanks to CCAB for putting on such an engaging and informative panel discussion about best practices for establishing and maintaining successful partnership with Indigenous businesses in the trades sector. Events such as this foster greater cultural understanding, collaboration, and economic empowerment for Indigenous communities.