Fortescue Metals Group has awarded contracts to two West Australian Aboriginal businesses as part of the its pioneering Billion Opportunities program.
The two contracts with a combined value of $6 million have been awarded to Aboriginal-Noongar owned business Kooya Australia Fleet Solutions, and to majority owned Aboriginal business, Thuroona Services.
Kooya Australia, the country’s largest Indigenous fleet management and rental company, was awarded a three-year contract for the supply of light and commercial leased vehicles across Fortescue’s operational sites.
Owner and Principal Executive Officer Kim Collard said the contract provides a sound platform for future growth.
“This contract is an investment in the future of our business and with the ongoing guidance and mentoring from Fortescue, we look forward to being able provide more opportunities to Aboriginal people through employment and training,” he said.
Thuroona Services was awarded a contract for maintenance work at Fortescue’s rail operations, following a competitive tender process.
Commenting on the award, Director Terry Riley said:
“By working together with Fortescue, we will do our part in bridging the gap between Indigenous and Non-Indigenous Australians by directly creating Indigenous jobs and helping to financially support the training and employment of Indigenous trainees, staff and contracts.”
Fortescue Chief Financial Officer Ian Wells noted that the company’s Billion Opportunities program has to date awarded 270 contracts and sub-contracts valued at A$2 billion to 110 Aboriginal-owned business and joint ventures.
“We are proud of our positive approach to engagement with Aboriginal people and providing access to training, employment and business opportunities,” Mr Wells added.
“By partnering with Aboriginal businesses to build their capability and capacity, we are opening the doors to future work with other organisations which is fundamental to their economic sustainability and prosperity.”