4 Yukon First Nations buy 2 planes from Alkan Air, lease them back to the company

·2 min read
One of Alkan Air's King Air 350s bought by a group of four Yukon First Nation development corporations. The group is leasing the planes back to Alkan Air, which operates the territory's medevac service. (Alkan Air/Yukon First Nations Air Leasing Limited Partnership - image credit)
One of Alkan Air's King Air 350s bought by a group of four Yukon First Nation development corporations. The group is leasing the planes back to Alkan Air, which operates the territory's medevac service. (Alkan Air/Yukon First Nations Air Leasing Limited Partnership - image credit)

A group of four Yukon First Nation development corporations are getting into the aviation business.

Yukon First Nations Air Leasing Limited Partnership purchased two of Alkan Air's planes used to medevac patients from the territory to B.C. and Alberta.

The planes, two King Air 350s, are being leased back to Alkan Air who will continue operating the medevac flights.

"We look at this as, from the Kluane Dana Shaw's perspective, as diversifying our portfolio of investments, and it's investing in the Yukon, and we're interested in that," said Stephen Mooney, president of Kluane Dana Shaw Limited Partnership, one the four First Nations development corporations involved in the deal.

The other three are Na-cho Nyak Dun Development Corporation, Selkirk Development Corporation and the Haa Chali Development Corporation.

Mooney added Kluane Dana Shaw previously bought one of Alkan Air's planes and leased it back to them.

"This [new deal] is just sort of an extension of the partnership that we have with Alkan," he said.

No change in medevac services

There will be no change in the operation of the medevac services in the territory because of the deal, said Mooney and Wendy Tayler, president of Alkan Air.

"Alkan Air is the operating company and will continue to provide the air ambulance service to the government from an air ambulance perspective," said Tayler.

She said the service usually does about one medevac flight a day, primarily to Vancouver but also sometimes to Edmonton or Calgary.

The service also employs eight people, all of whom will keep their jobs, Tayler and Mooney said.

More opportunities

The deal and partnership with Alkan Air, which also owns and operates a flight school, could lead to more opportunities for First Nations people in the North's aviation industry, said Mooney.

"And it's not just pilots, but it's ground crew. It's a front end office staff, and back end office on the accounting management. So, there's lots of potentials for First Nations citizens to get involved with the aviation industry," he said.

Tayler said the newly-formed Yukon First Nations Air Leasing Limited Partnership will continue to buy airplanes "not just for this air ambulance contract, but hopefully other future opportunities we have in the Yukon and elsewhere in Canada to provide air, ambulance and other safety related services."

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting