Review of Penticton Indian Band businesses opens the door for future growth: CEO | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Review of Penticton Indian Band businesses opens the door for future growth: CEO

Penticton Indian Band businesses such as Coyote Cruises are ready to move forward following changes to management practises that will see oversight of the various businesses by K'ul Management Group.

PENTICTON - A change in the way Penticton Indian Band companies are structured and administered should help pave the way to future prosperity for those organizations and future projects coming down the pipeline, says the CEO.

K’ul Group Chief Executive Officer Jonathan Baynes said a recent review of the band’s businesses revealed a lack of oversight into the management of the companies resulted in a “a lot of things falling through the cracks.”

Baynes says some people may consider the report alarming, but he says he wasn’t surprised by what was discovered.

“I wouldn’t have expected anything different, having worked in a number of different places,” he said.

Baynes said changes to the way the businesses were administered was needed, something that has since been initiated since K’ul Group conducted its review.

Baynes explained the Penticton Indian Band companies, which include Westhills Aggregates, Coyote Cruises and Sn’pinktn Forestry, historically had a director or manager who reported to the Penticton Indian Band administration directly, with each company having a representative who reported on their own.

Baynes explained Penticton Indian Band members are shareholders in the companies, but profits went in to a special account called earned source revenue.

“You had the companies, then you had the Penticton Indian Band Development Corporation set up to help develop the economy, but there was never a real strategy. The development corporation never made money but spent money received annually from the Indian and Northern Affairs Canada,” Baynes says.

The development corporation was recently turned into a limited master partnership and is now known as the K’ul Group, which has the responsibility of overseeing all of the band’s business.

Baynes said managers have stayed in place with the K’ul Group now holding managers accountable. The group will also ensure best business practices are being utilized and business opportunities that will benefit the band are being maximized.

Baynes said he’s also encouraging the band to consider a form of membership trust which all band shareholders could benefit from. All business monies now go to the revenue account managed by the band and council.

Baynes says the review was an important process that has allowed the K’ul Group to establish a baseline for the band’s businesses, in addition to providing the transparency band members were asking for.

He says another benefit of the review has been the employment of more band members than have ever been employed in the past in PIB business operations.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Steve Arstad or call 250-488-3065 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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