Vail Resorts expands into Europe


It was only a matter of time before one of the big ski companies in the United States set its sights on some of the incredible mountains that exist in Europe. This is already becoming a reality, and probably by next winter season, i.e. late 2022 and early 2023, Vail Resorts will have part ownership of the famous Andermatt-Sedrun in the incredible Swiss Alps.

If you’re a big fan of skiing, and have ever been lucky enough to cross the pond to ski some of the mountains that stretch across the United States, the name Vail Resorts is probably not unfamiliar to you.

And in case you were not aware of its existence, this is probably the last day that it will be so because anyone who practices skiing also in Europe will come across its name on more than one occasion in the very near future.

Today we are going to take a closer look at what are the consequences of Vail Resorts spreading to Europe, what have been the motivations to do so and some of the characteristics of the economic pact they have made to introduce, little by little, in our continent.

If you are interested in all this information… Continue reading the article!

First of all… What is Vail Resorts?

Vail Resorts is the largest snow resort and real estate operator on the planet. It is a giant company under which are the vast majority of ski resorts that exist throughout the United States. Since 2015 it also counts among its acquisitions that of an incredible ski slope in Australia, the Perisher Ski Resort, in the south of the country.

Until now it was little known in Europe, despite its large empire on the other side of the Atlantic Ocean: more than 10 of the most important resorts across the country, acquired throughout its business career.

Its beginnings were in the sixties, and it was in the hands of two workers at the ski resort in Aspen, Colorado, one of the best places to ski in the world. After these two workers thought of the possibility of joining all the most important ski resorts in the country in a sort of circuit, it was a venture capital fund called Apollo Management who financed it to start turning it into what it is today.

After reaping success after success, it was in 1997 that it began to be listed. But although things were going well, it was in 2010 when the success came sweeping this company that every year grows more and gets more positive results.

Why did you buy a resort in Europe?

Following the Vail Resorts CEO’s own words in recent interviews talking about the acquisition of a resort in Europe, we can draw the conclusion that entering the European market was something they had been trying to achieve for a long time. This is a strategic priority with the objective of continuing to achieve good financial results for a much longer period of time.

It is possible that during the next year Vail Resorts will have acquired a little more than half of the ownership of the Swiss resort, something that has cost them financially quite a lot: about 160 million, which is likely to become more over the next few years, when the giant company will probably also try to acquire other slopes and resorts on the same European continent.

On the other hand, it is evident that in Europe there are not only mountains of the highest quality that can be found in the United States, but also a potential public that already knew the services of Vail Resorts in America and can take advantage of them much closer to home.

By this we are referring to products such as the Epic Pass. This pass is valid for the vast majority of ski resorts in the U.S., and was also valid until recently for a few partner resorts in Europe, albeit for very short periods of time. But since the acquisition of one of the most important resorts in Switzerland, it will be included in the Epic Pass and therefore many people in Europe will decide to buy it in order to be able to use it more, and not only when they travel to the United States.

The financial situation of Vail Resorts: their shares on NYSE

If you have been following the movements of Vail Resorts (NYSE:MTN)  for some time now, you have probably come to the obvious conclusion that things are going very well for them. The fact that in the midst of an economic downturn they are investing in acquiring new resorts in other parts of the world gives you an idea that according to their research, there is going to continue to be profitability in skiing at least for the foreseeable future.

As of last year, Vail Resorts has a stock market value of more than $5 billion, and is currently trading at record highs. Should things continue to go well, as indeed looks set to happen based on their latest expansion strategies, Vail Resorts becomes one of the giants of the investment world, and a good place to consider picking up some shares.

All in all, Vail Resorts’ expansion into Europe simply speaks to a strategy of expansion beyond U.S. borders, and a new vision that adds mountains in Europe that are of incredible quality, and that may also move the American public to try new experiences.

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