Goldbelt distributes dividends

Posted: Friday, May 15, 1998

Goldbelt shareholders are getting a $300 check in the mail this week.

The payment is a regularly scheduled dividend paid out by Juneau's urban Native corporation, one of three it makes annually to its 2,800 shareholders.

The total payout is $816,000, or $3 per share. Typical shareholders hold 100 shares. Checks should begin arriving in mailboxes today, according to Joe Beedle, Goldbelt's president and chief executive officer.

Goldbelt has been aggressively increasing its operating companies and land holdings. Recent acquisitions include the Goldbelt Hotel Juneau - formerly the Westmark Juneau - and the Mount Roberts Tramway. Goldbelt had previously been half owner of the tram, but on May 1 completed a buyout of its partner.

The company has also just acquired a 43-acre industrial park in the growing community of Seward, including a dock that can handle cruise ships of all kinds.

Goldbelt embarked upon its growth plan four years ago, Beedle said Thursday at the Contemporary Native Issues Forum at the Alaska Native Brotherhood Hall.

The corporation's board approved a plan designed to build a series of tourism-based operating companies to provide jobs for company shareholders and a cultural outlet for Juneau's Native community.

``Not very many corporations can say they've adopted a plan and stuck with it,'' Beedle said. ``I'm very proud of our corporation for doing that. It takes time to produce results.''

Corporate assets now top $100 million, according to Beedle, and revenues last year were almost $21 million. Net income, though, was just $600,000 - less than a third of what it was the year before.

This week's disbursement is Goldbelt's second dividend payment this year. In February shareholders received a payment of $3.25 per share. The third payment, based on corporate performance, is due in November.

Last year typical shareholders received $875 in Goldbelt dividends. The company's growth plans are designed to increase annual dividends to $1,125 by 2002.

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