Vail Figures Out How to Generate Summer Revenue During the Winter

It figures. Over the weekend I finished up a long article for SAM (Ski Area Management) on winter resorts generating summer revenue. I think it included some interesting approaches to the issue, but apparently I missed one.

Today Vail Resorts announced that it’s acquiring Perisher Ski Resort in New South Wales, Australia. Here’s the link to the resort web site. It’s fall there, so the web cams show no snow. Hmmm. Looks a little like some West coast resorts right now.

According to the press release, “Perisher is the largest and most visited ski resort in Australia. The acquisition includes the resort areas known as Perisher Valley, Smiggin Holes, Blue Cow and Guthega, along with ski school, lodging food and beverage, retail/rental and transportation operations, which together comprise Perisher.” You can read the whole press release here.

While I guess this isn’t precisely summer revenue, or at least not revenue earned during the summer- Not our summer anyway- but it is in Australia- or at least it will be-summer, that is here in the U.S.- when they earn the revenue- but winter there.   It’s all very confusing.  It’s certainly counter seasonal to Vail’s North American Operations.

And why figure out how to run golf courses or water slides or zip lines or a anything else when you can just switch hemispheres and do what you already know how to do?

It’s not that simple of course. At least part of the goal in focusing on summer is to utilize the same fixed assets you utilize in the winter. Hard to do when you change hemispheres. Vail, of course, is already all over summer.

Subject to certain adjustments, Vail will pay $176.6 Australian dollars for Perisher. That’s $136 million U.S. But it didn’t used to be. Today, March 30, An Australian dollars only costs you something like $0.77 U.S. But a year ago, it cost you $0.92 U.S. So Vail got itself a discount.

Nice going Vail. Makes a lot of sense. Wish we had some numbers on Perisher. I wouldn’t have any Australian readers who know those, would I?

2 replies
  1. Josh
    Josh says:

    Perisher typically has the longest season in Australia due to its higher base altitude, although the vertical is less than other Australian resorts. One great aspect is that Perisher season passes will be honoured at Vail resorts during the Australian summer. Makes for a more attractive destination, than perhaps Japan, for Australians in our summer.

    Only problem is Perisher isn’t my local hill…

    • jeff
      jeff says:

      Hi Josh,
      Thanks for the additional information. Believe me, Perisher passes being honored at Vail resorts and the synergy that provides is one reason the deal got done. Maybe a big one. My condolences on this not helping you out personally.


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