Course aims to help Inuit-owned businesses land government work

These courses help but more entrepreneurship needed, says Pangnirtung mayor

Kakivak Association will be offering a free course on the skills needed by small businesses to get government contracts. It will be taught in Pond Inlet, Igloolik and Pangnirtung, which is seen here. (File photo)

By David Lochead

A course aimed at improving Inuit-owned small businesses’ ability to land government contracts is coming to Pangnirtung, Pond Inlet and Igloolik.

Kakivak Association, an economic development organization for Inuit, will offer the free course in procurement, starting in February.

It will run in Pond Inlet from Feb. 14 to 16, in Pangnirtung from Feb. 20 to 23, and Igloolik from March 21 to 23. The course will be done in-person and can be taught in Inuktitut.

It will be conducted in a workshop format, where an instructor helps teach small business owners skills such as finding government contracts to bid on and navigating complex government systems.

Giving small businesses in communities the chance to develop by providing goods or services to the government helps with job creation, said Glenn Cousins, Kakivak’s manager of partnerships.

“They create employment that wouldn’t otherwise be there,” he said.

Training small businesses to seek out government contracts will also make them more competitive, said Pangnirtung Mayor Eric Lawlor, although he also pointed to the relatively small amount of entrepreneurship that exists in communities.

“I think that’s lacking at the moment,” he said.

There are currently about five or six small businesses in Pangnirtung, according to Lawlor.

Lawlor said communities like Pangnirtung would also benefit from having development corporations to give people the resources to help them start businesses, such as training in bookkeeping.

He points to Ilisaqsivik, the Inuit-led community program and counselling organization in Clyde River, as an example of what’s needed in communities.

“I think promotion of [local] social enterprises would go a long way towards developing entrepreneurship in the communities,” Lawlor said.

Kakivak does offer some funding and programming to promote the development of small business. It offers loans and grants for starting a business, getting crafts and tools, and developing a tourism-based industry.

The Government of Nunavut also offers small business relief funding and has four community economic development offices.

Share This Story

(5) Comments:

  1. Posted by Glenn Cousins on

    If you are interested in taking the course in please get in touch by email to or give us a call (867) 979-0911 or 1-800-561-0911.

  2. Posted by Oh? on

    What small businesses?

  3. Posted by Bob Lee on

    When it comes to running a taxi business,, here’s a contract GN needs to understand. You pay cash, get receipt and taxi takes you to your destination, no other paperwork required.

    • Posted by Proven Problems on

      Large amounts of cash transactions in an institute of public government. There’s a recipe for disaster.

  4. Posted by Onions on

    Step 1, find a southern company in any line of business that the GN needs services or supplies from. It is okay, you don’t need to know anything about the business.
    Step 2, incorporate a nunavut company where you are 51% owner and southern company is 49%.
    Step 3, have the southern company prepare bid for you but you submit it and get major price reduction from GN. You eventually win a tender.
    Step 4, have the southern company do all the work including dealing with the GN.
    Step 5, collect your negotiated percentage from the southern company. No need for inuit labour or anything.
    From the people running NTI playbook.

Comments are closed.