Skiing Facilities

Industry Profile Report

Dive Deep into the industry with a 25+ page industry report (pdf format) including the following chapters

Industry Overview Industry Structure, How Firms Opertate, Industry Trends, Credit Underwriting & Risks, and Industry Forecast.

Call Preparation Quarterly Insight, Call Prep Questions, Industry Terms, and Weblinks.

Financial Insights Working Capital, Capital Financing, Business Valuation, and Financial Benchmarks.

Industry Profile Excerpts

Industry Overview

The 300 skiing facilities firms in the US operate downhill, cross-country, or related skiing areas and/or operate equipment, such as ski lifts and tows. These establishments often provide food and beverage services, equipment rental services, and ski instruction services.

Highly Seasonal Demand

Peak ski season generally runs from mid-November through mid-April.

Struggle for Growth

The snow sport industry has struggled for about a decade to grow participation.

Industry size & Structure

The average skiing facility employs about 113 workers and generates $11 million annually.

    • The skiing facility industry consists of about 300 firms that employ about 34,600 workers and generate $3.4 billion annually.
    • Industry revenue is highly concentrated; the top 50 companies account for 86% of industry revenue. However, the resort market is fragmented; less than 20% of the roughly 460 ski resorts in the US are owned by companies with four or more properties.
    • Large firms include Vail Resorts, Aspen Skiing, Alterra Mountain and Boyne Resorts.
                                Industry Forecast
                                Skiing Facilities Industry Growth

                                Coronavirus Update

                                Nov 23, 2021 - Uncertainty Reigns As COVID-19 Cases Increase
                                • COVID-19 cases are increasing nationally as the country heads into its second holiday season during the pandemic, and visits to skiing facilities may be affected if the trend continues. The seven-day average for new COVID-19 cases was above 95,000 on November 18 a 33% increase from two weeks prior, according to data from The New York Times. Cases increased in 39 states and Washington DC during the prior two weeks, and doubled in Massachusetts and Rhode Island. Experts don’t expect any potential surge to reach the levels of last year, however, as about 60% of the population was fully vaccinated by November 18.
                                • Small-business owners who received taxpayer-subsidized Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans of $150,000 or less during the coronavirus pandemic can seek forgiveness directly with the government through an online portal that was opened in August, allowing them to sidestep the private financial institutions that ran most aspects of the program for 14 months.
                                • Some businesses that took PPP loans in 2020 but don't apply for forgiveness soon will need to start making payments on the loan plus interest. The PPP loans will automatically convert to a standard loan at 1% interest if a small business does not apply to the SBA for forgiveness within 10 months of the end of the covered period under which they had to spend the money. For some businesses that received a loan when the PPP launched in April 2020, there was an eight-week covered period, which would put the forgiveness application deadline in the middle of July. For most loans operating under the more popular 24-week covered period, that meant a deadline in September.
                                • Skier visits to resorts totaled 59 million for the 2020-21 season, the fifth best on record, according to the Colorado-based National Ski Areas Association.s at least six months prior to and were laid off because of the COVID-19 pandemic. The bill requires all hospitality companies to inform former employees as to when their jobs or positions will be available after the economic crisis. The bill now advances to Governor Gavin Newsom's office.
                                • The California legislature passed a bill which requires reopening hospitality companies to offer jobs first to employees who had their jobs at least six months prior to and were laid off because of the COVID-19 pandemic. The bill requires all hospitality companies to inform former employees as to when their jobs or positions will be available after the economic crisis. The bill now advances to Governor Gavin Newsom's office.
                                • Vail Resorts is not planning to use its reservation system during the 2021-22 season. The company had developed and installed the mandatory booking system across all of its 34 North American resorts. Vail Resorts will likely book more than 12 million skier days via the system this season, assuming visitation of 13.7 million and a roughly 8% decline so far in 2020-21.
                                • Lindsey Leininger, public health expert, educator, and researcher at Dartmouth's Tuck School of Business, said that skiing isn't a huge risk of transmission. "Skiing is outdoors," Leininger, who is also an avid skier, told ABC News. "Skiing, you're pretty covered up, right? So you're not having close indoor social contact. So, it's all of the stuff around skiing that injects a lot of risks."
                                • Officials in many states have been reluctant to close skiing facilities during the coronavirus pandemic. “If we shut down the ski resort, how many people will take to the backcountry and get injured or trigger avalanches where the impact is greater? It’s a ‘damned if you do, damned if you don’t’ situation,” said Grace Franklin, public health director for San Miguel County, CO. Skiing itself poses relatively little risk of coronavirus infection, said Kate Langwig, an epidemiologist at Virginia Tech. Gathering in the lodge or bar is by far the biggest COVID-19 risk associated with skiing, Langwig added.
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