The as-yet-unnamed joint venture of KSL Capital Partners and the owner of the four Aspen resorts, Henry Crown and Company, has completed its $1.5 billion purchase of Intrawest Resort Holdings. Upon closing of the deal, Thomas Marano, Intrawest’s chief executive officer, resigned his position, KSL’s Bryan Traficanti was named interim chief executive officer, and Aspen’s David Perry was named president and chief operating officer. A search for a new chief executive officer is underway.
Under a separate agreement, the joint venture also completed its purchase of Mammoth Resorts. In addition, KSL’s Squaw Valley Ski Holdings is being rolled into the new venture. The terms of both Mammoth Resorts and SVSH transactions have not been disclosed.
The new entity creates a company with 12 mountain resorts and six million annual skier visits. The resorts include Squaw Valley, Alpine Meadows, Mammoth Mountain, Snow Summit, Bear Mountain and June Mountain in California; Steamboat and Winter Park Resort in Colorado; Blue Mountain Ski Resort in Ontario; Mont Tremblant Resort in Quebec; Stratton Mountain Resort in Vermont; and Snowshoe Mountain Resort in West Virginia. In addition, the company owns Canadian Mountain Holidays heli skiing operations and 1,100 acres of land for real estate development.
The Aspen resorts remain a separate company owned by the Crown family.
The new company expects to launch a new name and brand prior to the beginning of the 2017-18 season. The new company will continue to honor existing pass products that are currently on sale, including the Rocky Mountain Super Pass +, the M.A.X. Pass, and the Mountain Collective.
“This transaction marks a significant milestone for our company, our guests and our communities, and we are excited about the opportunities that lie ahead as a result of combining Intrawest, Squaw Valley Ski Holdings and Mammoth Resorts,” Traficanti said in a news release. “Our goal is to preserve the unique character and culture of each while also building something greater. Supported by affiliates of KSL and HCC, this new organization is well positioned not only for continued growth, but also to bring more value to our guests, more opportunities for our employees, and more investment into our local communities.”
Among the employees with new opportunities are several longtime leaders in the industry. Perry has spent more than four decades in the ski industry, including previous roles with Intrawest, Whistler/Blackcomb, and Canadian Mountain Holidays prior to being CEO of Colorado Ski Country USA and then vice president and COO at Aspen Skiing Company.
Rusty Gregory, Mammoth Resort’s chairman and CEO, is an investor in the new company and will serve on its board. He will also become senior strategic advisor to the new company.
Mark Brownlie has been appointed president and COO of Mammoth Resorts. Wade Reeser, GM of Big Bear Resort, is reporting to Brownlie.
Intrawest’s Sky Foulkes, previously president of Winter Park Resort and COO of Intrawest, is now president and COO of Winter Park.