Alaska Commercial Co. Takes Over Point Hope Native Store

Mar 8, 2023 | Alaska Native, News, Retail

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The Point Hope Native Store (PHNS) is becoming the thirty-sixth Alaska Commercial Company (AC) location in the state and the chain’s third store in the North Slope Borough.

Big Chain, Bigger Store

Tikigaq, the village corporation for Point Hope, has been operating the PHNS but is handing over the store to AC effective April 17. The two companies announced on January 31, 2023, that they had entered a partnership. The change is expected to expand retail offerings in Point Hope.

Throughout 2023, AC plans to invest in renovations to the PHNS building. This work includes adding refrigeration and expanding the availability of fresh food. In addition, AC will begin plans for the construction of a new retail grocery store in Point Hope.

“AC will be a tremendous benefit for our community,” says Tikigaq President Ryan Rock. “AC will be able to remodel the interior and build a brand-new store for the community within the next five years, something our corporation couldn’t do but desperately needed.”

Tikigaq represents 1,400 shareholders in northwest Alaska.

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“Tikigaq plans to keep working with AC on the wants and needs for the community, and AC wants that feedback to do the best they can with their abilities for the community,” Rock adds. “I’m excited for them to help the community and hope everyone welcomes them.”

AC is the longest-serving retail chain in Alaska, selling groceries and general merchandise for more than 150 years. Since 1992, it has been a subsidiary of Winnipeg-based The North West Company. It operates stores in thirty-two communities in Alaska, with three locations in Bethel and two in Metlakatla.

“Food security for rural Alaskans is an important goal for AC, so we are excited to be able to expand our product and service offerings in the North Slope by serving the people in Point Hope,” says AC President Kyle Hill. “We plan to ensure a seamless transition as we begin operations in Point Hope, and we look forward to becoming part of their community.”

Currently, the nearest AC store to Point Hope is in Kotzebue. The chain also has locations in Utqiaġvik and Nuiqsut.

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