Nunatsiaq Online
NEWS: Nunavut November 07, 2012 - 10:45 am

In spite of subsidies, Nunavut Development Corp. firms still lose money

Pang fish plant only NDC company to make profit in 2011-12

NUNATSIAQ NEWS
Jessie Oonark Ltd., whose Baker Lake store sells and makes a variety of products, arts and crafts, lost $27,000 this year — that’s after 2012 sales of $267,180, a drop in sales from $417,665 in 2011. Jesse Oonark received $150,000 in subsides this year. (FILE PHOTO)
Jessie Oonark Ltd., whose Baker Lake store sells and makes a variety of products, arts and crafts, lost $27,000 this year — that’s after 2012 sales of $267,180, a drop in sales from $417,665 in 2011. Jesse Oonark received $150,000 in subsides this year. (FILE PHOTO)

Almost all of the Nunavut Development Corp.’s nine subsidiary companies struggled financially in 2011-12, according to the corporation’s annual report, tabled during the recent sitting of the Legislative Assembly.

Although sales were up across the board, only Pangnirtung Fisheries’ Arctic char and turbot processing plant showed a profit. 

There, sales rose from $2,829,604 to $3,824,674, for both years.

The net profit for the Pangnirtung fish plant — after a development corporation subsidy of $100,000 — was $160,622 in 2011-12.

The plant created 35 jobs in 2012, as opposed to 17 in 2010-11.

Last year, the only subsidiary to show a profit was Cambridge Bay’s Kitikmeot Foods muskox and Arctic char processing plant.

But this year, the plant lost money.

That company, newly registered with the Nutrition North Canada program as a northern food processor, did see an increase in sales in 2012: from $568,000 in 2011, to just over $623,000 in 2012.

But Kitikmeot Foods went from showing a profit of $138,480 in 2011 to a loss of $99,153 in 2012.

The number of jobs stayed the same — about 11 — and the meat and fish plant received an annual $330,000 subsidy in 2011 and 2012.

Kivalliq Arctic Foods in Rankin Inlet, which also is registered with Nutrition North, had sales of $323,575, up from $197,158 in 2011.

The company received a subsidy of $125,000, up by $25,000 from 2011.

But it still showed a loss of about $111,000, although less than its 2011 loss of $273,000 loss in 2011.

Jobs with the plant that processes Arctic char and caribou, increased from six to 12.

At Papiruq Fisheries Ltd. in Whale Cove sales jumped from $7,800 in 20122 to $20,500 in 2012, with no subsidy contributions in 2012.

But Papiruq showed a loss of about $34,000.

On the arts and crafts side, Nunavut Development Corp. subsidiary companies saw jumps in sales, along with losses:

• Kiluk in Arviat, where seamstresses work on different leather and fur products, saw sales rise from $114,000 in 2011 to $200,000 in 2012. Kiluk received $125,000 in subsidies from the development corporation in 2012, but Kiluk lost almost $19,000;

• Taluq Designs Ltd. in Taloyoak, which specializes in Inuit packing dolls and items for Maplelea’s Inuit dolls, saw its sales rise from $76,185 in 2011 to about $105,000 in 2012. With a $130,000 subsidy from the development corporation, Taluq still lost $16,000 in 2012;

• Jessie Oonark Ltd., in Baker Lake, lost $27,000 this year — that’s after 2012 sales of $267,180, a drop in sales from $417,665 in 2011. Jesse Oonark received $150,000 in subsides this year;

• The Uqqurmiut Centre for Arts and Crafts in Pangnirtung, which produces and retails prints, wool clothing and woven tapestries, saw a loss of $86,425 in 2012, after a $190,000 subsidy, despite a sales increase of about $61,000; and,

• Ivalu, a retail arts and crafts store in Rankin Inlet, saw a loss of almost $6,000. Ivalu’s sales went up from $161,250 to $213,600. It received a subsidy of $15,000;

The development corporation paid out $3.8 million in wages to 118 Nunavummiut who work in arts and crafts food processing facilities.

A goal of the NDC is to “reach as many Nunavummiut as possible” particularly those in communities where the corporation does not have a subsidiary company, such as Repulse Bay, Igloolik and Gjoa Haven.

The Nunavut Development Corp. began life in the early 1990s as a Crown corporation called the Northwest Territories Development Corp..

After the creation of Nunavut in 1999, its Nunavut operations became known as the Nunavut Development Corp..

Its guidelines, inherited from the NWT, say subsidiaries should reach a break-even point after five years.

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