Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Vail Resorts Purchase Colorado Mountain Express

Last November Vail Resorts announced that it closed its transaction to acquire the resort ground transportation business, Colorado Mountain Express (CME), for a total consideration of $38.3 million, which amount will be adjusted for the final balances of certain working capital related accounts as well as the obligation of Vail Resorts to reimburse the seller for certain new capital expenditures.
"We are pleased to be adding Colorado Mountain Express to the Vail Resorts portfolio, which represents the first touch point with many of our guests when they arrive by air to Colorado for a world-class ski, snowboard and mountain resort experience. As we mentioned when we first announced signing the agreement to purchase CME, we are confident that by combining the resources of Vail Resorts with the effort put forward by the CME team we will be able to further improve upon the entire experience for all of CME’s guests. The acquisition of Colorado Mountain Express is also closely aligned with our Company’s goals of improving access to the mountains and operating in a sustainable manner by providing guests the option of minimizing traffic on I-70 and reducing fuel usage through carpooled ground transportation", said Rob Katz, Chief Executive Officer of Vail Resorts. He added, "We welcome the entire CME team to the Vail Resorts family".
Vail Resorts like other American companies operate many businesses outside of ski lifts: ski-schools, lodging, restaurants, and real estate promotion. Vail Resorts summed up its approach to the business this way: "A key component of the Company’s business strategy has been to expand and enhance its core ski operations while at the same time increasing the scope, diversity and quality of the complementary activities and services offered to its skiing and non skiing guests throughout the year (…)The Company’s business strategy is not only to increase skier days but also to increase Resort Revenue per skier day by capturing a higher percentage of the total spending of its year round destination and day guest by continuing to expand the range and enhance the quality of activities and services offered by the Company" (Vail Resorts Inc. Annual Report, 1998: I).
Colorado Mountain Express offers year-round ground transportation from Denver International Airport and Eagle County Airport to Vail (locations in and around Vail, Beaver Creek, Avon and Edwards), Aspen (locations in and around Aspen and Snowmass) and Summit County (includes Keystone, Breckenridge, Copper Mountain, Frisco and Silverthorne) for ski and snowboard and other mountain resort experiences. The company offers four primary types of service, including door-to-door shuttle business, point-to-point shuttle business with centralized drop-off at transportation hubs, private chartered vans and premier luxury charter vehicles. The vehicle fleet consists of approximately 250 vans and luxury SUVs, and currently transports approximately 420,000 resort guests each year.