by Ana Hoffman
On December 6, 2019, Bethel Native Corporation shareholders, beneficiaries of the Bethel Elkartaa Settlement Trust, received a distribution equal to $4.01 per unit/share. This distribution marks the thirty-second consecutive annual payment to shareholders.
From 1987 to 2017, Bethel Native Corporation proudly distributed over $11 million to shareholders.
In November 2018, shareholders established the Bethel Elkartaa Settlement Trust (BEST), an Alaska Native corporation settlement trust and made the first beneficiary distribution that year. This December marks the second annual BEST beneficiary distribution. Already, over $1,250,000 has been distributed from BEST. Issuing the annual payment from BEST provides tax savings to Bethel Native Corporation and ensures the distributions remain tax-free to the shareholder beneficiaries.
The distribution amount is determined through a clear and transparent policy adopted by the Bethel Native Corporation Board of Directors in 2009. The policy states, “An annual dividend shall be equal to 20% of the average consolidated pre-tax net income of the prior five years.”
The BNC Directors also serve as BEST Trustees. The BEST Board of Trustees applied this distribution policy to calculate the 2019 BEST distribution. This policy allows the distribution to grow in conjunction with the average overall growth and performance of Bethel Native Corporation. The distribution policy demonstrates continued commitment to the Corporation’s goals and mission.
Bethel Native Corporation has maintained its headquarters in Bethel for over forty years and continues to investment in the region, creating jobs and opportunities locally. A large portion of the shareholder base resides in Bethel and the surrounding villages. As a result, the December 2019 distribution, totally over $705,000 in payments, has a significant impact on the local economy.
These achievements have been made through the leadership of the Bethel Native Corporation Board of Directors and the Bethel Elkartaa Settlement Trust Board of Trustees.
Ana Hoffman serves as the President/CEO of Bethel Native Corporation.