About the Author IPOdesktop

During the IPO season Francis Gaskins, editor of IPOdesktop.com & director of research for Equities.com, regularly appears on CNBC TV, Bloomberg, thestreet.com & other financial cable channels. On the day of the Visa IPO he appeared on four cable TV financial shows including Bloomberg & CNBC. Over the past five years he has been quoted over 500 times by such financial media as the Wall Street Journal, Bloomberg, Reuters, Associated Press, USA Today among others. Those quotes are available at IPOdesktop.com. His varied personal interests include violin playing. For example, he is concertmaster of the Palisades Symphony. He also holds an MBA from Harvard Business School (finance) and an AB from Princeton University (economics).

IPO Preview: Peak Resorts

Based in Wildwood, MO, Peak Resorts (Pending:SKIS) scheduled a $100 million IPO on Nasdaq with a market capitalization of $140 million at a price range midpoint of $10 for Friday, Nov. 21, 2014.

The full IPO calendar is available at IPOpremium

SEC Documents

Manager, Joint-managers: FBR Capital Markets, Stifel, Baird
Co-managers: Janney Montgomery Scott, Oppenheimer & Co.

End of lockup (180 days): Wednesday, May 20, 2015
End of 25-day quiet period: Tuesday, December 16, 2014

SKIS currently operates 13 ski resorts primarily located in the Northeast and Midwest, 12 of which SKIS owns.


Valuation Ratios

Mrkt Cap ($mm)

Price /Sls

Price /Erngs

Price /BkVlue

Price /TanBV

% offered in IPO

April ’14 fiscal, seasonal


Peak Resorts








Neutral minus

Selling 71% on IPO, a weakness

Interest was 115% of operating earnings for fiscal ’14

Wants to repay Mt Snow debt for real estate development

Results depend on erratic snowfalls

P/E of 93, price-to-book of 1.7

Lenders putting pressure on company

To put the conclusions and observations in context, the following is reorganized, edited and summarized from the full S-1 referenced above.

SKIS is a leading owner and operator of high-quality, individually branded ski resorts in the U.S.

SKIS currently operates 13 ski resorts primarily located in the Northeast and Midwest, 12 of which SKIS owns.

The majority of SKIS’s resorts are located within 100 miles of major metropolitan markets, including New York City, Boston, Philadelphia, Cleveland and St. Louis, enabling day and overnight drive accessibility. SKIS’s resorts are comprised of nearly 1,650 acres of skiable terrain that appeals to a wide range of ages and abilities.

SKIS offers a breadth of activities, services and amenities, including skiing, snowboarding, terrain parks, tubing, dining, lodging, equipment rentals and sales, ski and snowboard instruction and mountain biking and other summer activities.

SKIS believes that both the day and overnight drive segments of the ski industry are appealing given their stable revenue base, high margins and attractive risk-adjusted returns.

SKIS has successfully acquired and integrated ten ski resorts since its incorporation in 1997, and SKIS expects to continue executing this strategy.

SKIS has built an award-winning portfolio of individually branded entertainment properties, most of which are recognized as leading ski resorts in their respective markets.

SKIS’s devotion to maintaining high quality standards across its portfolio through strategic investments and upgrades has created a loyal customer base that contributes to a significant number of repeat visits at each of its resorts.

In particular, SKIS’s investment over the last decade in the latest, high-efficiency snowmaking equipment has earned it the reputation as an industry leader in snowmaking efficiency, capacity and quality, allowing it to consistently increase skier visits and revenue per skier.

Since 2008, SKIS has invested $49.8 million in capital expenditures and growth initiatives. SKIS’s strong branding reinforces customer loyalty and serves to attract new visitors through focused marketing campaigns and word of mouth.

Combined, SKIS’s ski resorts generated approximately 1.8 million visits in the 2013/2014 ski season, an increase of 4% from the prior ski season, which SKIS believes puts it among the top U.S. ski resort operators in terms of number of visits during these seasons.

SKIS increased its revenue by 5.5%, from $99.7 million in fiscal 2013 to $105.2 million in fiscal 2014.

As the U.S. economy continues to improve, SKIS’s resorts are well-positioned to benefit from increased consumer spending on leisure activities, and SKIS expects to continue to increase its lift ticket prices and drive more skier visits to its resorts.

SKIS believes it is better positioned to handle downturns in the economy than larger, overnight fly ski resorts because of its greater accessibility and lower overall costs to consumers.

SKIS believes that the risk that its market will become saturated with new industry participants is relatively low.

SKIS believes that its resorts do not directly compete with overnight fly destination ski resorts, such as the larger ski resorts in Colorado, California, Nevada, Utah and other destination ski resorts worldwide.

Rather, SKIS believes that it competes primarily with other existing day ski resorts, overnight drive ski resorts and non-ski related day vacations.

SKIS’s competition varies by geographical area.

While SKIS believes that its Midwestern ski resorts face only limited competition within their relative metropolitan markets, SKIS is not the only day ski resorts or overnight drive ski resorts in its Northeastern and Southeastern markets (as defined by the NSAA).

SKIS competes with approximately 135 resorts in the Northeastern market and 47 resorts in the Southeastern market.

5% shareholders pre-IPO
Timothy D. Boyd 32.0%

Stephen J. Mueller 12.3%

Richard K. Deutsch12.1%

Glenn E. Boyd, Jr. 8.1%

Robin B. Graham 13.7%

David Grenier 5.3%

Commensurate with this offering, SKIS intends to pay quarterly cash dividends on its common stock at an initial quarterly rate of $0.1375 per share. SKIS intends to pay the first dividend in February 2015, which will include an amount on a pro-rated basis for the period from the effective date of this offering to January 31, 2015 and, thereafter, to pay dividends on a quarterly basis.

The indicated annual yield at the price range mid-point of $10 is 5.5%.

Use of proceeds
SKIS expects to receive $92 million from its IPO and use it for the following:

$42.9 million of the net proceeds from this offering for repayment of a portion of the outstanding debt relating to the development of its Mount Snow ski area.

$12.5 million of the net proceeds for repayment of a portion of the outstanding debt relating to its acquisition of the Attitash ski area.

$11.4 million of the net proceeds for repayment of a portion of the outstanding debt incurred principally to pay off debt secured by Crotched Mountain, of which approximately $0.4 million will be used to acquire the portion of the land underlying Crotched Mountain that SKIS leases.

$9.5 million of the net proceeds to repay a portion of the outstanding debt due pursuant to the Amended and Restated Credit and Security Agreement, dated as of October 30, 2007, among the Company and certain of its affiliates, as borrowers, and EPT Ski Properties, Inc., as lender.

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