Native corporation Doyon Limited is the largest private landowner in the state of Alaska. Operating more than a dozen subsidiaries, it balances the management of a profitable modern business while also ensuring the wellbeing of its people, traditions and land
Sculpted by powerful flowing rivers, Doyon’s land covers 50,585 square kilometers in the Alaskan interior, ranging from Alaska’s border with the Yukon towards the North Pacific coast. For the corporation, his vast tract not only serves as a livelihood, business and a place to call home, but also as the source of the organization’s values.
“We are intimately, subtly and profoundly connected to our place – our corporate values flow from this sense of place,” says the corporation’s value statement.
Established in 1972 as an Alaskan native corporation and the largest private landowner in Alaska, Doyon’s mission is to enhance its economic power to promote the wellbeing of its shareholders, strengthen the traditional native way of life and protect the land that supports it.
So far, it has been a clear success. This year the company distributed $13.1 million in dividends to its 19,900 shareholders, while also providing scholarships, honoring local traditional practices, and giving out grants to promote healthy communities.
Doyon’s businesses are varied and its family of companies works in the fields of oil and gas, government contracting, natural resource development, tourism and technology. However, its biggest sources of revenue are drilling operations and utility services.
“A lot of opportunities have come from our strong balance sheet and ability to invest capital,” said Aaron Schutt, Doyon’s president and CEO.
The corporation has made significant investments in exploring for gas, oil and minerals, and large deposits have been discovered. “For the last 10 years, we’ve invested in excess of 100 million dollars in oil and gas exploration,” said Schutt.
Now, the corporation is looking for foreign partners to develop the lands.
“It’s a big opportunity for countries or companies that might be interested in large tracts that are underexplored,” said Schutt. Furthermore, the corporation is looking to bring value to its shareholders by gaining a foothold in new markets and growing existing business abroad.
Doyon, one of Alaska’s native corporations, holds over 12.5 million acres in the Alaskan interior, a region of diverse geology and rich in mineral endowment. But at Doyon they insist that it’s not the land that sets the company apart, but rather its connection to that land. “Old as time, that link is the source of a work ethic forged by centuries of subsistence living. Inherited from our grandparents, our respect for the land mirrors our esteem for people — in particular, our 19,000 shareholders,” a company statement reads.
Much of Doyon’s land was acquired for its mineral potential with a long-term view of providing economic development benefits for its Native American shareholders. Exploration has generated a number of attractive mineral prospects and entire districts, some with drill targets and demonstrated resources. These are supported by an extensive database generated by previous programs conducted by Doyon and other firms in partnership with Doyon. A number of prospects are on or near the well-developed road system of Interior Alaska; most others are accessible by navigable rivers or from nearby communities with airstrips. A long history of exploration and commitment to resource development allows Doyon to bring realistic expectations to structuring agreements and designing programs. Doyon is a recognized leader in Alaska’s business community and can provide support from exploration through to development and operations.
Doyon is Alaska’s largest private landowner and one of the top 10 Alaska regional corporations. Established in June 1972, the corporation runs more than a dozen companies across various sectors, including oil and gas extraction, gold mining and supporting services.