STC's industrial acquisition a move to self-determination
- EFN Staff | May 31, 2017
A company’s strength in its core values can serve to enhance opportunities and ultimately boost profitability. This was the driving force behind the Saskatoon Tribal Council’s (STC) recent bold move to acquire 100% ownership of STC Industrial Contracting (formerly Lynco Eagle).
“This is another step for the self determination movement of STC and will ensure that benefits are realized for the tribal council’s member communities.” says Brad Darbyshire, President of STC Industrial.
With its head offices and shop located in Saskatoon, STC Industrial Contracting services the Saskatchewan industrial sector through construction and maintenance specializing in mechanical, piping, electrical, and instrumentation contracting as well as offering steel fabrication services.
Often First Nation owned companies form partnerships to gain access to capital for growth, or build strength in the areas of bonding for large scale project, and capacity to increase project size. Some may even seek out partnerships to assist in getting their foot in the door in the local industrial sector. Partnerships can be very beneficial if both partners are aligned in terms of vision and values. Changes to the economy and other external pressures can, in some cases, cause shifting priorities that can affect expectations among partners.
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The main driver to take on 100% ownership of STC Industrial Contracting was based on the desire to embed STC’s culture and values directly into the corporate mission and vision of the corporation. STC has also been strengthening its interest in positioning itself for the long term to create future prosperity. “We are focused on moving forward with the values of providing high quality, dependable services and solutions for our clients, while developing opportunities that create jobs and generate profitability. Ultimately, it’s about the grassroots support of the STC communities and the local broader community,” said Darbyshire.
STC Industrial Contracting is assembling a strong team of long term Saskatchewan residents to build a company that possesses a strong safety culture, with high quality processes and good governance. The corporation will be working closely with STC Employment Skills and Training for its recruitment, training and retention needs. STC Employment Skills and Training works in partnership with various education and training institutions such as SIIT, Sask Polytechnic, the University’s of Saskatchewan and Regina as well as the various community colleges across to province to identify and draw from the most qualified and available Indigenous people for career opportunities.
STC’s Industry Relations Manager Cliff Tawpisin says that this type of relationship “goes hand in hand with the broader quality of life initiative that has been a priority for STC. It’s about sharing resources, developing partnerships and working collectively to ensure that our young people have as many opportunities as possible.”
For the 12,000 individual members of STC, opportunities can be limited. Recognizing this, Tawpisin sees this as a way to create success for both the newly acquired corporation and individual members. “Partnerships are hard. We have learned through experience that whatever we develop, it has to be with the intent to improve the lives of our members,” said Tawpisin.
Knowledge of the Saskatchewan business environment and the move towards diversity and inclusion provides an advantage to STC Industrial Contracting for future development opportunities. “We understand that as a Saskatchewan First Nations wholly owned company, we are aligning ourselves better with the inclusion initiatives of many of our clients, including Potash Corporation.”
Relationships have historically played a central role in business development in Saskatchewan. “Fifty years ago, many of the robust, strong Saskatchewan grown companies we know today had to foster relationships to grow.” STC is a leader in relationship building which will be an advantage for the newly acquired corporation. “Today there is a new requirement to include Aboriginal content. As an Aboriginal business, we are looking for that same support to ensure the success and viability of our business development goals,” said Tawpisin. “We are optimistic about our future and we’re working to bring people in to take on new roles to advance our growth plans. We know if we stick to our roots, we will be a competitive choice in the Saskatchewan market.”