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Huu-ay-aht First Nations Purchase Bamfield Store

Huu-ay-aht First Nations Purchase Bamfield Store

BAMFIELD (April 29, 2013)—After more than a year of research and business planning, the Huu-ay-aht First Nations have purchased the Tides & Trails Market and Café in Bamfield, British Columbia. Located in the heart of the Bamfield community, the business offers grocery, liquor, and restaurant services to a town of several hundred residents whose population more than quadruples in the summer.

The purchase marks the first time the Huu-ay-aht First Nations have bought real estate in Bamfield. Other businesses owned and managed by the Nation are located in and around the village of nearby Anacla, currently home to many Huu-ay-aht citizens. The Nation assumed ownership on April 29 and will continue offering all the services residents and visitors expect from the business—with a grand opening to follow.

“Huu-ay-aht First Nations saw this purchase as a unique opportunity to revitalize the area and support our citizen needs for training and employment,” says Huu-ay-aht Chief Councillor, Jeff Cook. “We also saw the opportunity to integrate existing Huu-ay-aht businesses and create a hub for tourism activities.”

In addition to serving the community, the Nation intends to use the store as a training ground for Huu-ay-aht citizens interested in gaining service sector skills and experience. Immediately following the transfer to Huu-ay-aht ownership, a transition team will manage the store to establish and train staff, upgrade the overall premises, and craft a succession plan for future management and operations.

They will also work with the previous owners to ensure a smooth transition. A fixture in the Bamfield community for decades, the store was purchased from long-time owners Ralf and Rita Weber who operated the market and café for 23 years.

“The purchase of the Market and Café offers a great many immediate and long term benefits to Huu-ay-aht. It’s a first step towards the diversified economy we envision,” says John Jack, Chair of the Nations’ Economic Development Committee.

Although involved in the store’s purchase from the beginning, the government arm of the First Nation will hand over operations and management to the Huu-ay-aht “group of businesses.” Formed in 2011, the group of businesses manages day-to-day operations and helps separate business from politics.

“The Market and Café is a key asset located in the business centre of the Bamfield community.  Huu-ay-aht aims to integrate the Nations’ business interests in the larger business community of Anacla and Bamfield,” says Stan Coleman, the Chief Executive Officer managing the Huu-ay-aht group of businesses.

The Huu-ay-aht First Nations invite you to visit their new Market and Café when next in Bamfield.

For more information or to book an interview, please contact Stan Coleman at 250-728-3080.

 

Contact Information:

Stan Coleman, Chief Executive Officer, Huu-ay-aht group of businesses

Phone: 250-728-3080

Email: hdcadmin@hdc.huuayaht.org

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