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Thunder Bay, ON – Friday 12th February, 2010: – Six Matawa First Nations Chiefs joined officials from Great Slave Helicopters Ltd. today to sign a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to enter into a joint venture to provide helicopter air charter services to customers within their traditional territories.According to the new joint venture agreement, Great Slave Helicopters will act as the operator of the business; providing aircraft(s), crews(s), engineering support, and other necessary management services, while the Matawa First Nations will be largely responsible for marketing the helicopter services to prospective clients within their territories.
This is not the first joint venture initiative with First Nations for Great Slave Helicopters, which is headquartered in the Northwest Territories and the second largest helicopter company in Canada.
Says company spokesperson and Thunder Bay native Anthony Margarit: “Great Slave Helicopters has enjoyed mutually beneficial partnerships with several other First Nations over the past 20 years and this latest agreement brings forward many exciting benefits for all parties including profit sharing, training opportunities and youth scholarships.”
Over the past year, representatives from Great Slave Helicopters have travelled to several Matawa First Nations to present their business proposal and meet with community leaders and members.
Says Chief Lewis Nate of Eabametoong First Nation: “We are optimistic about the potential of this partnership with Great Slave Helicopters, particularly considering the amount of mineral and mining activity that is in our traditional territories. By providing helicopter services to these companies who wish to enter the remote north, our First Nations can begin to benefit from the growing presence in this sector.”
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