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Vail Resorts Sees a Significant Bump in Pass Sales

By Brian Withers and Demitri Kalogeropoulos – Oct 23, 2021 at 11:15AM

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Sophisticated marketing and variety of enticing pass options are helping grow revenue.

Vail Resorts (MTN -1.00%) is offering its Epic Pass for competitive prices and seeing positive results. In this video clip from "Beat & Raise," recorded on Sept. 24, contributors Brian Withers and Demitri Kalogeropoulos discuss the company's focus on the lifetime value of the customer. 

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Brian Withers: Really interesting. This is a quality company that has really been focused on growing their footprint but recognizing they can't gouge customers this season because then they won't get customers to come back next season. They are really focused on looking through their investor presentation from April as they're really focused on that lifetime value of the customer and making sure that there are lift tickets and even these Epic Pass products are very competitively priced for what you get. Let me show you this one. There's a couple of charts from that presentation. I just wanted to show if you hadn't seen them. When does their fiscal year end? It ends in June or?

Demitri Kalogeropoulos: Yeah, I believe this was the fourth-quarter report that just ended.

Withers: Yeah, because you want to [laughs] start your fiscal year in the winter. So yes. This FY21, that was an estimate for the year back in April, but they would have finished the year already. I'm not sure exactly how they did, they probably came pretty close to this, but over the last decade, FY11 was 120 million. You can see what they've done since then, international partners, the Epic pass, the Australia pass, the military pass. It's just really grown their revenue up to 120-650 million. That's what? Five times the size. Now, I know that there's new properties and stuff on there, but that's an impressive run.

Kalogeropoulos: Thinking about how that's just the start normally. That's just your path to get on the resorts. Like a trip to Disney, you might call that ticket sales but all the ancillary purchases you can make while you're there, that's really funded through that.

Withers: They also showed here that the blue on the bottom is this pass. This upfront commitment the customers make. That's almost becoming [inaudible 03:53:37] 19 and probably left out the COVID year, but it's almost half of their sales, which is great if you can get happier sales committed upfront. Then you can see these advanced slip tickets and passes here make up almost three-quarters of the show.

Kalogeropoulos: They've been really committed to just very sophisticated marketing abilities and work. Attaching those people, getting people to try via Season Pass. They've got a really full volume of different, you can do smaller passes or these big Epic Global passes that gives you access to all their resorts. Then there's a good price point for anybody.

Withers: Yeah. I noticed in their presentation, they had this make your own pass thing and you can play around with it and adjust it to where you're getting what you want for the value that you want.

Demitri Kalogeropoulos has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends Vail Resorts. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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