NNSL Photo/Graphic


Home page text size buttonsbigger textsmall textText size Email this articleE-mail this page

Capitalizing on industrial camps
Joint venture agreement signed in Fort Liard

Roxanna Thompson
Northern News Services
Published Thursday, December 15, 2011

A Fort Liard company has entered into an new partnership and positioned itself to fill contracts for large-scale industrial camps.

During a ceremony on Dec. 12, Acho Camps and Catering signed a joint venture agreement with Horizon North Camps and Catering to form a new company, Acho Horizon North LP. Acho Camps and Catering pursued the agreement in order to be more competitive, said Chief Harry Deneron of Acho Dene Koe First Nation.

Acho Camps and Catering, which used to be part of Beaver Enterprises Ltd., was originally formed when Beaver was doing a lot of construction contracts. One of the largest costs associated with the projects were the camps for workers. People asked why we couldn't provide this service ourselves, said Deneron.

Both Acho Camps and Catering and Beaver are part of Acho Dene Koe First Nation's business arm.

Acho Camps and Catering has been providing camp services such as set up, maintenance and providing catering services to clients primarily in the oil and gas sector. The company, however, could only accommodate camps for up to approximately 150 people and couldn't compete for contracts for larger camps of 250 people or more.

"We need this joint venture because we're letting the bigger camps go by," said Frank Kotchea, the president of Acho Camps and Catering.

The company will continue to provide smaller scale industrial camps while the new company, Acho Horizon North, will compete for the larger contracts.

Deneron said the company realized there was a need to provide services on a larger scale. Acho Horizon North will be focusing on drilling and pipeline projects in British Columbia as well as looking ahead to the camps that will be needed if the Mackenzie Valley Pipeline moves forward.

Deneron said Horizon North, based in Calgary, was chosen for the joint venture because there was a good fit between the two companies. Horizon North provides camps and catering services and also manufactures camps.


Horizon North also has agreements with larger trucking companies that will be useful when camps have to be relocated, Deneron said.

The joint venture will be launched at the camp Acho Camps and Catering already has established at kilometre 99 on Highway 77 in northern British Columbia. Acho Horizon North will take over the management of the camp and Horizon North will make an investment to match the facilities that are currently there, said Deneron.

The camp has the potential to grow, he said.

In addition to capturing more business opportunities, the joint venture will create opportunities to train local people and move them into management positions, said Kotchea. Horizon North has the expertise to assist with the training, he said.

E-mailWe welcome your opinions. Click here to e-mail a letter to the editor.