Vail Resorts is a luxury resort company, which was incorporated in 1985
and is publicly traded on the NYSE. The company is divided into three different
categories; Mountain, Lodging, and Real Estate. The mountain division includes 11
different ski resorts mainly located across the United States, with a single
resort in Canada, as well as 3 urban ski areasi.
Primarily these resorts offer skiing experiences (passes, schools), dining, and
retail/rental operations. The lodging division consists of roughly 4500 hotel
rooms and condominium units which is owned and operated under the brand of Rock
In addition to the luxury hotels and condominiums, are the mountain resort golf
courses are also included in the lodging division. The real estate division operates
under the name Vail Resorts Development Company and facilitates the development
and sale of land, creating communities within close proximity of their resorts.
terms of corporate social responsibility from the company’s internal view, Vail
Resorts claims to be committed to sustaining the environment and resources
through various initiatives outlined within the company’s foundation
(EpicPromise). The company has set goals of having zero net operating
emissions, landfill waste, or operating impact on forests and habitat by 2030
in order to preserve the natural environment in which they operate in. Since
2008, the company has reduced energy usage by 19%, and is planning on
increasing energy efficiency by 15% by investing $25 million in energy saving
projects, with an end goal of consuming 100% renewable energyiii.
Aside from their environmental efforts, Vail Resort’s foundation commits
roughly $7 million per year to various local non-profit and charitable
organizations. The foundation also offers financial support to employees in
need, by providing $750,000 annually in employee grants for educational and
emergency situationsiv. Some
examples of local community initiatives from 2017 included; construction of new
trails, restoring public lands and streams, feeding local families and
improving local schools.
From an external perspective, Vail Resorts ranks in the middle of the
pack in terms of corporate social responsibility. The companies environmental
efforts, quality customer service, and employee treatment have them ranked them
in the middle of the scale, by the CSR Hub, a sustainable management toolv.
It seems that the company respects their physical environment, aside from a mistake
made by the company back in 1999, where a logging road was creating that
crossed a bog area, which violated the Clean Water Act. This mistake resulted
in massive fines for the company as the road was not noticed by authorities for
nearly a yearvi.
More recently, the company has been cited in a legal proceeding regarding their
Kirkwood Resort and the disposition of asphalt from their parking lot, into the
Kirkwood Creek in 2016. The result of this was roughly an $800,000 fine for the
Despite these mistakes, Vail has realized that sustaining the environment is
extremely important not only from a social responsibility perspective, but also
a business perspective. Keeping their physical environment healthy is essential
in the ability to offer a quality service to its customers.
Vail Resort’s revenue and net income has
been steadily growing since 2014 according to their financial statements. Vail
reached a net revenue of roughly $1.9 billion and a net income of $210 in 2017.
This can be attributed to the acquisition of multiple ski resorts including
Stowe in 2017, Whistler Blackcomb in 2016, Perisher in 2015, and Park City
Mountain Resort in 2014. The net revenue can be broken down between the three
segments of the company; Mountain, Lodging, and Real Estate, where each
division contributed 85%, 14%, 1% of the company’s net revenue respectivelyviii.
Over the last five years, Vail’s stock price has been consistently growing as
well, with a current price per share at approximately $225, which is a $60
increase from just one year ago (January 2017). Total assets have also
increased in the past year, seeing them rise from $2.5 million to $4.1 million,
while total liabilities grew from $1.5 million to $2.3 millionix.
The growth of both net income and share price are a positive indicator in the
stability of the company financially.
Overall, the company has seen
healthy growth in revenue, market share price, and assets over the past few
years and can be projected to continue its growth in the near future. With the
increase in the amount of season passes being sold across most of their
resorts, they are gaining more and more loyal customers which off sets the
potential of declining visitation statistics that may occur as a result of a
variable such as poor winter weather.
Vail Resorts considers their mountain resorts
to be operated under the highest available standards for their customers. Their
mountain experience offers opportunities for all skill levels, when it comes to
skiing and snowboarding, and claim to be located in areas that accumulate
higher than average snow fall amounts throughout the year. The resort also
operates a state of the art, energy efficient snow making system to ensure
customer satisfaction, regardless of what point of the season it is. The
company has streamlined efficiency by implementing lift systems (chair lifts,
gondolas), that are high speed and energy efficient to maximize customer
satisfaction. Each mountain resort offers premium ski/snowboard schools for
various age groups, that are taught by some of the industry’s most experienced
and credentialed instructors. Regardless of a guest’s skill level, their
mountain resorts offer a high-quality experiencex.
Vail Resorts lodging and real estate
division claims to offer a complete resort experience by continuing to upgrade
and develop the community within each resort. They offer almost 200 different
dining experiences on their resorts, that include everything from fine dining
to trailside outlets. Across their resorts they provide roughly 250 retail
stores that mainly specialize in sporting goods, to provide customers easy
accessibility to related products and rentals during their stayxi.
The stakeholders of Vail Resorts
include their guests, their employees, the community they have developed, the
environment in which they operate, as well as their shareholders. The company
appears to be committed to their stakeholders, stating that they ensure their corporate
values and decisions made, aligns with the needs and expectations of their
They understand that their success begins and ends with the guests, as the
company aims to provide a unique and memorable experience for each visit, to
help develop loyal relationships with their customers. The ability to offer
these experiences would not be possible if not for the thousands of talented employees,
the environment that is able to support, or the shareholders who assist in
funding the company. It appears that Vail Resorts understands that each stakeholder
is vital in the business process, and is committed to making decisions in the best
interest of each individual group.
After analyzing the major aspects of
Vail Resorts, I would recommend that the client engage in a partnership with
the resort company. Their commitment to social responsibility includes
continually improving their processes by implementing new technology to reduce
emissions and sustain the environment. As stated in their EpicPromise, the
eventual goal of having zero net operating emissions, landfill waste, or
operating impact on forests and habitat by 2030. The company’s social
responsibilities do not only extend to the environmental aspects, but also the
commitment of supporting local charities, non-profit organizations, and their
employees to support educational and emergency financial needs.
After reviewing Vail Resorts
financial statements over the past few years, it appears that the company is
also in good, stable financial standing, with an expected continual of growth.
The resort company has made several acquisitions of companies in order to
facilitate growth, and has caused stock prices, net revenue, and net income to
steadily increase year after year.
The company prides themselves on
providing a once in a lifetime experience at each of their resorts, by offering
quality skiing/snowboarding conditions, dining, nightlife, lodging, and
opportunity. Vail Resorts is continuously improving their mountain division
with things such as snow making, lift systems, and ski schools, to provide the
best customer service possible. The lodging division offers various activities,
dining, and retail opportunities, to make sure all essential customer needs can
be met within the resort community. The real estate division presents the
opportunity for customers to have the option of being involved in the resort
community permanently, by offering condominiums and other resort properties.
Vail Resorts clearly identify their
stakeholders via their website, which consist of their guests, their employees,
the community they have developed, the environment in which they operate, as
well as their shareholders. They understand that it is important to operate in the
best interest of these groups, as each stakeholder has an essential role in
making the business successful.
In conclusion, Vail Resorts is a
safe, responsible corporation that I would recommend partnering with if the
client was given the opportunity. The company has a proven track record, is
growing at a consistent rate, and understand the necessity of operating in a responsible,
and efficient manner.