Muleski

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This has no doubt been under discussion since Och-Ziff bought the CNL portfolio.

Boyne had sold the hard assets to CNL and holds long term {almost 30 years} operating leases. When CNL had to sell, they had to move the entire portfolio. O-Z may do well breaking it up and selling the pieces.

I think this is a positive move. Bet we'll see more action on the O-Z holdings, and perhaps at Boyne.

http://markets.businessinsider.com/news/stocks/boyne-resorts-to-acquire-ownership-of-seven-resorts-and-attractions-1018630117

Apologize if this is posted elsewhere.....
 

coskigirl

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I wonder if the ones not already on the Ikonpass will get added to it? Adding Michigan and PNW locations plus another in Utah could be interesting.
 
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Muleski

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Just "guessing" that there may be a couple of things in play with Boyne and Alterra, in the future. Not sure if it impacts Ikon. Boyne has operated these all since selling the hard assets to CNL, who liquidated their entire portfolio to O-Z. Boyne is a very good operator. Perhaps we see them partnering with Alterra on some other "stuff".

Now that Boyne owns these, or will, selling them makes them much, much easier than having somebody else needing to wade through the leases.

I hope that folks do realize just how much is "fluid" in this business right now. Assuming that any property will "always be this way" is probably not something I would do...unless it's Aspen. Or one of the big name recent acquisitions........
 

Tricia

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I hope that folks do realize just how much is "fluid" in this business right now. Assuming that any property will "always be this way" is probably not something I would do...unless it's Aspen. Or one of the big name recent acquisitions........
This has been evident in everything I've experienced since moving west 7.5 years ago.
 

Kneale Brownson

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Last five years I worked in Michigan, it was at Boyne Mtn. I remember going there regularly for years before I joined the ski school there, viewing it as a sort of "special" outing. We'd ski, enjoy a good lunch in the dining room, ski some more and go home. On one of these visits, I was seated at a little table in the dining room next to the large one where Everett always gathered his crew of cronies for lunch, and I overheard him announce to them that "I used to be worth $20 million, now I owe $200 million."
 

RJS

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I wonder if the ones not already on the Ikonpass will get added to it? Adding Michigan and PNW locations plus another in Utah could be interesting.
That's a great question. In the East, we already have Loon/Sunday River/Sugarloaf on the Ikon Base and Ikon with 5 and 7 days combined between the 3 resorts, respectively. While I selfishly wish the pass included more days (I love Sunday River and Sugarloaf) like the MAX Pass did, I imagine that Boyne didn't want to take away sales from its New England Pass that covers those mountains.

I wouldn't be surprised if Brighton ends up joining the Ikon in Utah. From the owners perspective, I don't get the sense that Brighton (or Solitude for that matter) get the volume of destination visitors that the mountains could support or their owners desire. From Alterra's perspective, adding more days in Utah makes the pass even more appealing to Utah skiers who don't do a whole lot of skiing locally, but still want to take a trip elsewhere.

Going in a totally different direction, I wouldn't be surprised if Vail some day tries to buy Brighton from Boyne. One Wasatch involves connecting Park City to Brighton through Guardsman's Pass. That would give Vail another Utah resort, and one with much better snowfall numbers than PCMR/Canyons. I know a lot of people here aren't the biggest fans of Vail, but you have to admit that unlimited skiing at Park City and Brighton for the price of an Epic Pass would be pretty sweet.
 

Brad

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Vail and Alterra don't need any more resorts. The U.S shouldn't be allowing monopolies/duopolies.
 

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Now we will find out how much Boyne's consistent investment in Big Sky was because they owned it versus cared about it more than the other properties. I'm betting we might see some substantial improvements in the next 2-3 years.
 

coskigirl

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Vail and Alterra don't need any more resorts. The U.S shouldn't be allowing monopolies/duopolies.
I don't think it would be considered a monopoly if the resorts just joined the pas rather than being purchased by Alterra (or Vail). Arapahoe Basin had to be divested from Vail Resorts ownership for monopoly reasons but is still allowed to be on the Epic passes.
 
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Brad

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It still is in the spirit of attempted monopoly. 1-2 appear close to controlling the entire U.S ski industry. They might not be there quite yet but when they do get there I would expect the cost of a day of skiing to increase great than inflation rate. My guess is that there are very few ski areas greater than 500 acres that aren't affiliated with vail or alterra.
 

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Got to agree with coskigirl....years ago RCR tried to buy Tremblant. They were denied by the government for already owning Mt Ste. Anne and Stoneham. Monopolies are not a good thing, but....the pass option is though.
 

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It still is in the spirit of attempted monopoly. 1-2 appear close to controlling the entire U.S ski industry. They might not be there quite yet but when they do get there I would expect the cost of a day of skiing to increase great than inflation rate. My guess is that there are very few ski areas greater than 500 acres that aren't affiliated with vail or alterra.
Not sure why one would think that Vail or Alterra or Boyne or Peak have the "spirit of attempting a monopoly". There are still well over 400 mountains out there. You never have to come close to Vail or Alterrra or Peak or Boyne if you don't want to. For example, from NYC, I can ski as close as Jiminy Peak, or further away at Mad River or Magic or even further away at Smuggler's Notch or Whiteface, or at places like Bretton Woods that has over 100 trails.

Consolidation and joint-ventures are realities - necessities - of many industries. The ski industry is far from unique on this. Similar "entertainment" industries are much more consolidated. The amusement park industry in the US is basically Disney and Universal - with Six Flags a distant third. I spent close to $600 for a one day visit to Universal Studios for two adults and one child. Talk about prices going up! The movie theater industry in the US is basically AMC and Cinemark - with Marcus a distant third. It costs $50 for two adult and one child tickets to go see a movie on a Saturday night in NYC. That is before popcorn and a soda!

Season pass prices will only go up, like they always have. Just like everything else. And they will likely go up above the rate of inflation. Wages are going up, real estate taxes are going up, healthcare costs are rising, food prices are not going down, permitting costs to build are higher each year...season pass prices will need to go up and up and up in order to meet the rising costs of operating a ski resort. Did I mention the increasing costs related to snowmakig that most resorts are facing given the increased weather volatility:( Season pass prices going up is not due to Vail or Boyne or Alterra being evil monopolistic maniacs.
 
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coskigirl

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It still is in the spirit of attempted monopoly. 1-2 appear close to controlling the entire U.S ski industry. They might not be there quite yet but when they do get there I would expect the cost of a day of skiing to increase great than inflation rate. My guess is that there are very few ski areas greater than 500 acres that aren't affiliated with vail or alterra.
I'd argue the opposite. The affiliation between Alterra and other owner/operators (Boyne/Powdr/independent operators) actually provides for better competition against the Vail Resorts conglomeration where without the Ikonpass/Mountain Collective/MAX Pass there is no other major multi-mountain pass to compete. I think it's a brilliant move for the individual resorts that simply couldn't compete against it on their own.
 

David Chaus

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I wonder if the ones not already on the Ikonpass will get added to it? Adding Michigan and PNW locations plus another in Utah could be interesting.
Could indeed be interesting. For Vancouver locals who might want to go to a destination other than Whistler/Blackcomb, an Ikon pass might be a draw. Similarly for Seattle-area who day-trip to Summit at Snoqualmie.

That said, there are a few things to consider; both of these areas are mostly locals who aren’t necessarily looking for bigger mountain experiences, rather it’s convenience. Cypress is a short drive from North Vancouver, Snoqualmie Pass is 30-45 minutes from the East Side (the mostly suburban cities of Bellevue, Issaquah and surrounding areas). If they wanted bigger mountains they only have to drive and hour or two further (Whistler, Crystal).

One exception is Alpental; of the 4 ski areas that make up the Summit at Snoqualmie, Alpental has some serious skiers and has terrain that is compared to Taos or A-Basin. They often do travel a bit and and Ikon pass would be an obvious upgrade from whatever local pass they have.

Crystal Mt used to be a Boyne resort, they have since become independent but they might be willing to participate in an Ikon pass. They used to be on the Max pass as did Cypress and Snoqualmie (and Bachelor). Stevens Pass was part of the Max pass for only a year.

This is all assuming that former Max Pass partner Resorts would all make good Ikon partners, not an assumption I think we can make at this time.
 
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Muleski

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Very simple comment. Boyne has operated all
of these resorts. If it had made sense for Ikon, {and Boyne} nothing would have held up their inclusion in Ikon. Nothing has changed in that respect. I would assume that it made no sense.
 

RJS

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It still is in the spirit of attempted monopoly. 1-2 appear close to controlling the entire U.S ski industry. They might not be there quite yet but when they do get there I would expect the cost of a day of skiing to increase great than inflation rate. My guess is that there are very few ski areas greater than 500 acres that aren't affiliated with vail or alterra.
I don't agree. @LKLA and @coskigirl make great arguments. There's a difference between ownership (Vail owns Whistler, or Alterra owns Mammoth) and pass partnerships (Vail partners with Telluride and RCR, Alterra partners with Boyne, Alta/Snowbird, etc.). A good number of large resorts are part of some multi-mountain pass, but Vail and Alterra are far from owning most of the big resorts in the US and Canada.

So far, the multi-mountain passes have been great for the consumer. I credit the Epic Pass for driving down season pass prices on the East Coast. A great example: Cannon decided for next season to roll back their season pass prices 8 years.

If anything, I think pass partnerships between different resort owners is going to become more common. Vail just added a ton of value to their pass by partnering with Telluride and RCR. My favorite resorts on the Ikon pass are not resorts owned by Alterra.
 

coskigirl

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Very simple comment. Boyne has operated all
of these resorts. If it had made sense for Ikon, {and Boyne} nothing would have held up their inclusion in Ikon. Nothing has changed in that respect. I would assume that it made no sense.
Without seeing the actual operating agreements I can't say whether Boyne would have had the right to include the resorts on a multi-mountain pass prior to acquisition. In fact this quote from Stephen Kircher speaks to the competitive advantage gained by acquiring the ownership. "This opportunity now at hand will enable us to accelerate and fine tune the execution of our reinvestment plans for these spectacular properties, which will boost our competitive advantages and support our focus on continuous enhancement of the guest experience.”
 
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Muleski

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The leases on all of the properties that they "sold" to CNL were almost identical. Those leases carried over to O-Z. Steve's quote is really, I'm told, speaking to the ability to cut out another group to be fed, and to control the entire decision making, planning and prioritizing process. These properties almost all have deferred maintenance needs. Some significant. This has been in the works since day one with O-Z.

The leases effectively made Boyne the only buyer for "their" properties. But Boyne was never a buyer for the whole CNL portfolio, which CNL had to liquidate under the terms of their REIT. Complicated, but simple.

Now, which properties will Boyne sell? Might they acquire more? Might Boyne sell?

All up in the air......
 
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RJS

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@Muleski, you spend a lot of time at Sugarloaf, a Boyne operated resort. What do you think about them as an operator? I have heard generally good things, but I will say that Sugarloaf got a lot of bad PR from two different chairlift incidents in 2010 and 2015. I was much less passionate about skiing back then, but those incidents got enough news coverage that I heard about them, and worried that Sugarloaf wasn't being managed well.
 
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