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  1. #1

    Rumor: Vail to buy Stowe.

    http://www.stowetoday.com/stowe_repo...287592cba.html

    Anyone here anything reliable? I guess for Sugarbush this would mean cheeper masses since Epic passes are cheeper than Stowe's passes.


  2. #2
    Quote Originally Posted by Benski View Post
    I guess for Sugarbush this would mean cheeper masses since Epic passes are cheeper than Stowe's passes.
    What do you mean by this?

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by phin View Post
    What do you mean by this?
    Benski is suggesting that vail would make Stowe part of their epic pass which is around $800 at their early rate. By doing that he's saying the significant drop in stowe's pass price by virtue of being on epic would force sugarbush to lower their prices to compete. I don't personally agree with that line of thought.


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  4. #4
    Based on the precedent set by the young thirties pass Sugarbush tries to undercut Stowes price.

    http://forums.skimrv.com/showthread....hank-you-Stowe!

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by Benski View Post
    Based on the precedent set by the young thirties pass Sugarbush tries to undercut Stowes price.

    http://forums.skimrv.com/showthread....hank-you-Stowe!
    Vastly different dynamics. The early 30s pass was for a smaller subset of skiers due to the narrow age range. It probably also had the benefit of targeting an age range that was "on the fence" about whether to buy a pass so offering the lower price to that age range could drive more sales and offset the discounted price. Trying to "undercut" Stowe if Vail bought them and they were added to the Epic pass is a whole different ballgame. Now you're talking about a huge age range (36-64) to target and attempting to even compete with the Epic pass could result in too much of a revenue loss to make sense. There are many people that would not jump ship to Stowe suddenly even if the price dropped to Epic pass levels.

    Still a lot of ifs here as the whole deal is still just a rumor for now.

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by cdskier View Post
    Vastly different dynamics. The early 30s pass was for a smaller subset of skiers due to the narrow age range. It probably also had the benefit of targeting an age range that was "on the fence" about whether to buy a pass so offering the lower price to that age range could drive more sales and offset the discounted price. Trying to "undercut" Stowe if Vail bought them and they were added to the Epic pass is a whole different ballgame. Now you're talking about a huge age range (36-64) to target and attempting to even compete with the Epic pass could result in too much of a revenue loss to make sense. There are many people that would not jump ship to Stowe suddenly even if the price dropped to Epic pass levels.

    Still a lot of ifs here as the whole deal is still just a rumor for now.
    I agree with both of you to a point...i mean the young 30s pass showed Stowe's power in the market. I had never heard of a resort dropping their rates and refunding people because of a move by another ski area.. that's unprecedented. I worked with Ski Vermont a few winters ago and this discussion came up a bit. a lot of the ski resorts in the state bank on Stowe's passes being so high. They can then charge more but still be cheaper...regardless of which place you like more the common notion is that stowe is up there. I wouldn't under estimate the change in revenues to other ski areas.

    I do think an $800 passto Stowewould be a game changer in the state. Sugarbush would become the most expensive pass in Vermont.

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by Sugarbushskier9 View Post
    I do think an $800 passto Stowewould be a game changer in the state. Sugarbush would become the most expensive pass in Vermont.
    Perhaps...but at the same time if you look out west you'll see plenty of non-Vail resorts that don't attempt to compete with Epic. (There was even a section on the very topic of competing with Vail on pricing in the new Ski, Inc book written by Chris Diamond). I'm not saying it won't have some impact, but I think more likely it would simply either slow any increase from Sugarbush or "best case" (for us) is cause a slight drop in prices. I think some people think other resorts like SB would try to directly compete with the Epic pass pricing and I think that's where people are wrong. Then again, I have no numbers at all to back any of my theories up and am just going with my gut instincts. Would SB want to be known as the most expensive pass in the state? I don't know.

  8. #8
    Hawk's Avatar
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    By and large I would think that it would have some minor impact from the frugal people that would jump ship for any savings. That I think is a small minority. But for most like me and my friends who own a place here, love the community of the valley, love skiing with friends here and really enjoy the uniqueness of Sugarbush, there is no way we would ever change to that place. In the end, we are only speculating that they would change the whole price structure to the Epic pass. And who's to say that they would change the day ticket price. Until that happens I will never go there except for then I use my SkiVT 3 or 5 pack. It will be interesting to see.
    Trouble with you is the trouble with me,
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  9. #9
    Hawk's Avatar
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    One other thought. If you take the Epic Pass option and decide to switch to Stowe where would you stay? If you do a quick check of Stowe real estate you will find that prices are out of control up there for either buying or renting. That was the big rub with me 15 - 20 years ago when we started looking and it is much higher now.
    Trouble with you is the trouble with me,
    Got two good eyes but we still donít see!

  10. #10
    Agree Hawk. Sugarbush is my "home" and I would not leave either no matter what Stowe charged for their pass.


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  11. #11
    There are always tons of rumors in the ski industry. Who knows if this is true but it is a logical choice for Vail. Rob Katz is an aggressive and capable CEO who wants 1 million Epic passholdes. We would obviously watch this with great interest and while it would threaten us to some degree, I also think it would afford us a number of opportunities. The ski industry is cons\olidating but I strongly believe their will continue to a spot for locally owned and managed resorts like Smuugs and Sugarbush and unique experiences like our neighbor MRG.

  12. #12

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    Several movers and shakers at John Egan's Skier Hall of Fame indicated that it looks very possible. Things to ponder.

  13. #13
    I have to imagine this would cause a significant impact on Skiing in the state. The VERY early season pricing for an adult pass at the Bush is pretty high. And the price for purchase just before the season starts is ludicrous for most people.

    I think the Epic pass banks on a lot of purchasers not using it to the fullest extent, or spending a lot at the resort on gear, beer and food. Sugarbush is my home, and I'm willing to pay a bit more to "be local" so to speak. However, I think the Epic pass, and Stowe, have a way of setting the market.

  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by brave fellow View Post
    I think the Epic pass banks on a lot of purchasers not using it to the fullest extent, or spending a lot at the resort on gear, beer and food.
    And lodging...lodging is a big part of Vail's revenue stream from what I've heard. They count on people needing to travel to their resorts. But yes, I also wouldn't be surprised if the average Epic pass holder uses it much less days overall than your average local east coast pass holder. I know people that buy Epic passes simply to use it for one or two week-long trips out west. You're saving substantial money off the walk-up ticket rates, but not using the pass a huge number of days in that scenario.

  15. #15
    Well the deal is done... http://finance.yahoo.com/news/vail-r...130000462.html

    $50 Million, however the purchase does NOT include Stowe's lodging and much of their real estate holdings. My take is Vail did a deal for Stowe's operations only more as a way to drive higher Epic pass sales and drive more people to their western resorts. The lack of purchasing the real estate and lodging components of Stowe is a bit of a surprise.

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