Vail Resorts, Inc. (NYSE:MTN) continues its growth across North America and beyond. Until 2017, MTN has owned and operated 13 luxury ski resorts from Australia to British Columbia, Lake Tahoe to Michigan. For the past two decades, MTN has been acquiring hotels, ski resorts and associated businesses, and has now turned into a luxury travel force in the industry.
With a market cap of $8 billion, its empire has grown far beyond snow sports and now Vail’s resorts offer year-round activities and vacation housing in some of the most beautiful and sought after destinations on two continents.
Just this month, MTN closed on yet another iconic property, Stowe Mountain Resort in Vermont. Stowe has been around a long time, which means it knows how to run its business in the unpredictable weather on the East Coast.
Vail Resorts is finally moving its empire to the East Coast. This is a market MTN had yet to tap, and when it stepped in it went for the best, which is typical of MTN.
Vail Resorts’ Epic Pass
Not only does the company add yet another luxury resort to its list, but Stowe also becomes the newest member of MTN’s Epic Pass, which is a season pass you can use at all 14 of the company’s mountains. No other company offers such a unique pass.
Plus, if you’re an avid skier who can travel, it’s an amazing offer. For about $860, you can ski any MTN property as much as you want for an entire year. As a comparison, just to get an annual ski pass at Killington, a popular Vermont ski resort, you will pay $850-$1100.
So, even if you only ski Stowe, for example, you don’t pay a premium for the other 13 resorts you can use.
What’s more, because Vail Resorts owns and operates the food, hotels, ski shops, etc., it offers Epic Pass members discounts when they travel to MTN resorts. That means, even if there’s no snow on the slopes, but you want to vacation out West in the summer, you have plenty of options for discounted rooms, food and rentals.
What This Means for MTN Stock
This integrated strategy has helped both Vail Resorts (and MTN stock) grow into an industry powerhouse, and it continues, even in its smaller projects. Recently, MTN donated an 11.5 acre parcel of land to the Summit County Colorado (nearby two of its resort locations) for affordable housing. The plan is to build 66 units and, like a similar deal earlier this year, the builders will hold some of the units open for MTN employees so they can live closer to the resorts without having to pay huge rents.
It’s a virtuous circle that has worked very well for Vail Resorts and MTN stock owners.
In the past 12 months, MTN stock is up 50%, which is a testament to its successful integrated strategy. And even after this big move, Vail Resorts stock still delivers a solid 2.2% dividend.
But, the play here is growth; the dividend is just more proof that MTN stock is shareholder-friendly. It’s no Marriott International Inc (NASDAQ:MAR) or Hilton Worldwide Holdings Inc (NYSE:HLT), but it knows its niche and continues to deliver solid growth.
Louis Navellier is a renowned growth investor. He is the editor of five investing newsletters: Blue Chip Growth, Emerging Growth, Ultimate Growth, Family Trust and Platinum Growth. His most popular service, Blue Chip Growth, has a track record of beating the market 3:1 over the last 14 years. He uses a combination of quantitative and fundamental analysis to identify market-beating stocks. Mr. Navellier has made his proven formula accessible to investors via his free, online stock rating tool, PortfolioGrader.com. Louis Navellier may hold some of the aforementioned securities in one or more of his newsletters.