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Vail Resorts buys Park City Mountain Resort
Thursday September 11, 2014 - Email this article to a friend

Following a bitter legal dispute the US ski resort has been bought by its main rival. It is a seismic shift in the US ski industry with Vail Resorts the clear winner in the battle.

Vail Resorts has announced that it has acquired Park City Mountain Resort (PCMR) from Powdr Corp. for $182.5m.

It includes all the ski area, the resort and the parking land.

It does not include a small tubing area 10-miles from the resort.

"We're very pleased. This really secures Park City's economic future. This provides certainty for every family and every small business," said the Mayor of Park City, Jack Thomas, to local media.

Some locals fear what Vail Resorts may do, as it is seen by one section of the community as too corporate, but most people and businesses inthe area are just thankful the uncertainty is over.

All litigation between the two sides is now finished.

Vail Resorts already runs Park City Mountain Resort's neighbouring ski resort of Canyons.

 "With the acquisition, all aspects of the previously disclosed litigation with respect to PCMR have been settled and this dispute will no longer pose any future threat to disrupt the operation of the resort," said a statement from Vail Resorts.

Earlier this week a bond was posted by Park City Mountain Resort to ensure it could open this winter - see here for the PlanetSKI story that contains links to all the background.

Vail Resorts is delighted with its purchase and to many it underlines the strength and negotiating skills of the company that owns and runs resorts in Colorado, California and Utah.

Other people are horrifed at how it has obtained Park City Mountain Resort.

It now owns two resorts in Utah and is a major player in the region.

"First and foremost, we are very pleased to bring a permanent end to this dispute and provide assurance to the guests and employees of PCMR, and to everyone in the Park City community, that they no longer have to worry about any disruption to the operation of the resort," said the Chairman and CEO of Vail Resorts, Rob Katz.

"This has been a difficult period for everyone involved and I commend John Cumming and Powdr Corp. for helping to find a solution to this situation," he added.

John Cumming though is not so generous in his comments and is the apparent loser.

"Selling was the last thing we wanted to do, and while we believe the law around this issue should be changed, a protracted legal battle is not in line with our core value to be good stewards of the resort communities in which we operate," said the CEO of Powdr., John Cumming, to US media.

"A sale was the only way to provide long-term certainty for PCMR employees and the Park City community. My family and I are extremely grateful to have had the opportunity to play a role in making PCMR what it is today, and we deeply appreciate the dedicated employees and all of the people who have supported us over the years."

Park City Mountain ResortPark City Mountain Resort













The President of Vail Resorts, Blaise Carrig, will act as interim chief operating officer for the resort.
"We understand that this acquisition represents a change for all of the employees of PCMR and I look forward to working with everyone on the PCMR team as we develop a vision for the future of the resort," said  Blaise Carrig in a statement.

Local businesses in Park City are said to be pleased the worry about the future is over, but some are concerned about how Park City Mountain Resort will now be run and what the long-term plans of Vail Resorts are.

The operations of PCMR and Canyons will remain separate for the 2014-2015 ski season.

Vail Resort's Epic Pass and Epic Local Pass will be valid at Park City.

All Park City Mountain Resort passes for the 2014-2015 ski season will be valid and may be exchanged or upgraded for a season pass that will also be valid at Canyons.

The majority of all lift tickets sold at either resort will be valid at the other.

Epic Pass expandsEpic Pass expands








"We're thrilled to be able to offer unlimited skiing and riding at Park City Mountain Resort on the Epic Pass for the 2014-15 winter season," said the chief marketing officer of Vail Resorts, Kirsten Lynch.

As part of the deal Vail Resorts must keep all  PCMR employees in their current roles except for the senior management team.

There is already talk of connecting Canyons and Park City Mountain Resort.

It would make it the largest linked ski area in the USA with 7,000 acres.

Just a few years ago Vail Resorts had no interests in Utah. Now it has two of the seven major resorts and is the most important player in the area.

A seismic shift has occured in the US ski industry.

For the spirit of the mountains

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