Bruce Power signs supplier agreement with locally-based First Nation construction company

Bruce Power has signed a supplier agreement with a new, locally-based, First Nation-owned joint business venture to provide construction services to Bruce Power, as part of the company’s ongoing investment program.

Makwa Development Corp., which is owned by Nawash residents Scott Lee and Shane Chegahno, has joined forces with Tron, a construction company based on Saskatchewan’s English River First Nation that brings extensive experience working in Canada’s nuclear sector. Tron and Makwa recently signed a Memorandum Of Understanding (MOU) to create a fully First Nation-owned venture, with experience in the nuclear sector and a goal of maximizing employment of local Indigenous people.

“The Makwa-Tron joint venture will be 100 per cent First Nation-owned,” said Lee. “The entity will be situated on the Nawash First Nation and will hopefully create immediate opportunities and benefits for both the Nawash and Saugeen First Nations and their respective Band Members. Our hope is that our community members as well as businesses owned by community members will be able to derive benefit from the coming decades of Bruce Power operations in the SON Territory.”

Mike Rencheck, Bruce Power’s President and CEO, said the Makwa-Tron joint venture will provide Bruce Power with a variety of services during the Life-Extension Program. Tron’s experience ranges from infrastructure and utilities construction to electrical and instrumentation installation, as well as vessel fabrication, among other disciplines.

“Bruce Power is committed to developing wealth-creation solutions for Indigenous peoples on a number of fronts, and these types of business partnerships are a key element to achieving this,” Rencheck said. “The Makwa-Tron joint venture will provide community members with excellent jobs and give Bruce Power the skillsets we require to advance our investment program.”

The Hon. Greg Rickford, Minister of Energy, Mines, Northern Development, and Minister of Indigenous Affairs Ontario, praised the partnership and the many benefits that it will generate.

“It’s very encouraging to see this collaboration between Bruce Power, MAKWA Developments, and Tron/Des Nedhe Development,” Minister Rickford said. “These are the types of partnerships that support economic development, create good jobs, and provide opportunities for First Nations communities to share in Ontario’s prosperity.

“Indigenous communities possess immense skill and expertise for endeavours like this, and this project will undoubtedly showcase the benefits of local partnership, and encourage similar economic development into the future.

Sean Willy is President and CEO of Des Nedhe Development, which started as a company in 1991 as an economic development vehicle for the English River First Nation. It has grown steadily, through vibrant partnerships and sound community leadership. Des Nedhe Development manages a broad and secure portfolio of successful companies in the resource, construction, supply, manufacturing, communications, and real estate sectors, he said.

“Through community foresight and planning, we have been forging new paths,” Willy said. “We are building on traditional values and an entrepreneurial spirit, while delivering opportunities that add value for our customers and our people. It has become one of the leading Indigenous economic development organizations in the country.”

Learn more about Tron at www.tronpower.com.

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