Vail Resorts Reports Record Net Income for 2006

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SAM Magazine-Broomfield, Colo., Oct. 5, 2006-Vail Resorts, Inc. reported record net income of $45.8 million for the fiscal year ended July 31,2006 compared to net income of $23.1 million for fiscal 2005, a rise of 98 percent. Much of the increase stemmed from mountain operations, plus reduced depreciation and interest expense and a gain on the sale of businesses.

Resort revenue, the combination of mountain and lodging revenue, for the fiscal year rose $39 million, or 5.3 percent, to $776.2 million, and resort expense increased 2.9 percent, to $585.8 million, up $16.5 million.

Mountain revenue for the fiscal year was $620.4 million, up $79.5 million, a 14.7 percent increase from $540.9 million for 2005. Mountain expense increased $51.2 million, or 13.1 percent, to $443.1 million. Lodging revenue for 2006 decreased $40.5 million, or 20.6 percent, to $155.8 million compared to 2005, and lodging expense decreased $34.8 million, or 19.6 percent, to $142.7 million. The lodging decreases reflect the sale of several hotel properties, including the Vail Marriott, the Snake River Lodge and Spa in Jackson Hole, and The Lodge at Rancho Mirage.

Real estate revenue for the 2006 fiscal year decreased $10.2 million, or 14 percent, to $62.6 million, and real estate expense decreased $1.6 million, or 2.7 percent, to $56.7 million.

Income from operations for the 2006 fiscal year improved $17.0 million, or 19.3 percent, to $105.3 million compared to $88.3 million for the 2005 fiscal year.

VR CEO Robert Katz said, "For the fiscal year, we had record resort reported EBITDA results, which were realized primarily due to an approximate 15 percent increase in mountain revenues, a significant portion of which flowed through to our bottom line. These revenue increases were caused by a combination of a 5.9 percent increase in skier visitation and a 6.4 percent increase in our effective ticket price, which included a 12.3 percent increase in season pass revenues. Additionally, our ancillary businesses including ski school, dining and retail/rental, also had significant revenue increases."

He added, "We were pleased with the results from our owned hotels on a same-store basis, which experienced a 6.1 percent increase in occupancy, a 3.9 percent increase in our average daily rate and a 10.4 percent increase in revenue per available room."

Katz noted that good early-season snowfall contributed to the record results, but that this only partially explains how VR achieved it third consecutive record EBITDA performance. "We believe these results are primarily due to the many improvements we have made to our resorts and the continuous focus by our employees on enhancing the guest experience," he said.

For fiscal 2007, Katz predicted more modest growth compared to 2006: "We expect net income to range from $48 million to $57 million," he said.