NBDC was instrumental to the creation of the Qiniq network, making affordable and reliable internet access available in every Nunavut community.
Expenditures for broadband (through NBDC) began in 2002-2003 when Indian and Northern Affairs Canada funded the development of a business plan for Nunavut. Industry Canada and GN Sustainable Development provided additional funding for the business plan in the following fiscal year. The business plan process included a public RFP, the evaluation of network proposals (two were received, one from SSi Micro Ltd and the other from NorthwesTel), and extensive input from government, Inuit organization, community and business stakeholders. The business plan was finalized and submitted to Industry Canada for review on June 6, 2003. That business plan recommended SSi Micro Ltd as the only compliant bidder (and the lowest cost bidder) and resulted in the Qiniq network.
After approval by Industry Canada (the primary government investor), final contract negotiations were accomplished with SSi, additional funding from several other parties was completed, and the Qiniq broadband network was installed and implemented in the spring of 2005 in all 25 Nunavut communities. The Qiniq network was officially launched in June 2005 in Rankin Inlet.
NBDC accomplished its initial task: to get affordable and reliable Internet access into every Nunavut community. By all accounts, the Qiniq network has been wildly successful because it met a real need in the territory and had support (both financial and moral) from a wide range of stakeholders.