Vail Resorts, Inc. ( MTN Quick Quote MTN - Free Report) recently announced its interim period data for its 2022/23 North American ski season through Apr 16, 2023. The metrics include all North American destination mountain resorts and regional ski areas (including the results of Seven Springs, Hidden Valley and Laurel Mountain). The numbers exclude the results of the Australian ski areas and Andermatt-Sedrun. The company stated that the results are subject to fiscal quarter-end review and adjustments. Ski Season Metrics
Season-to-date (through Apr 16, 2023), total skier visits increased 6.1% compared with the prior-year season-to-date period’s (Apr 17, 2022) levels. Strong demand from local and destination guests coupled with improved conditions at Northeastern U.S. resorts contributed to a rise in visitation compared with the prior-year period’s levels.
Lift ticket revenues (including an allocated portion of season pass revenues for each applicable period) increased 4% compared with the prior year’s season-to-date period’s levels. Ski school revenues surged 26.4% year over year. Dining revenues rallied 35.3% compared with the prior-year period’s levels. Retail/rental revenues for North American resort and ski area store locations increased 21.8% compared with the prior-year season-to-date period’s figure. The company reported growth in its ancillary businesses on account of improved staffing levels and the relaxation of COVID-19 induced operational restrictions. Kirsten Lynch, CEO of Vail Resorts, stated, "Our strong season pass sales results, prior to the start of this season, significantly mitigated the negative impacts from weather and peak holiday travel disruptions, highlighting the stability created by our advance commitment strategy." Price Performance Image Source: Zacks Investment Research
Shares of Vail Resorts have gained 13.7% in the past six months compared with the
industry’s 11% growth. The company is benefiting from its offerings such as Epic Pass, Epic Local Pass, Epic Day Pass and Epic Coverage products. This and a focus on digital marketing and media advertising bode well. MTN expects it to be a key growth driver. Meanwhile, the company continues to reinvest in its resorts to boost customer traffic. However, abnormal weather variability across its resorts (in the East) and significant storm related disruptions at our Tahoe resorts remain headwinds. Earnings estimates for fiscal 2023 have declined in the past 30 days, depicting analysts’ concern regarding the stock’s growth potential. Zacks Rank & Key Picks
Vail Resorts currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).
Some better-ranked stocks in the Zacks Consumer Discretionary sector are Hilton Grand Vacations Inc. ( HGV Quick Quote HGV - Free Report) , Crocs, Inc. ( CROX Quick Quote CROX - Free Report) and PlayAGS, Inc. ( AGS Quick Quote AGS - Free Report) . Hilton Grand Vacations currently sports a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy). HGV has a trailing four-quarter earnings surprise of 12.1%, on average. Shares of HGV have declined 6.8% in the past year. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for HGV’s 2023 sales and EPS indicates a rise of 7.3% and 3.4%, respectively, from the year-ago period’s levels. Crocs carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). The company has a trailing four-quarter earnings surprise of 21.8%, on average. Shares of Crocs have increased 112% in the past year. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for CROX’s 2023 sales and EPS indicates a rise of 12.5% and 3.3%, respectively, from the year-ago period’s levels. PlayAGS carries a Zacks Rank #2. The company has a trailing four-quarter earnings surprise of 133.3%, on average. The stock has declined 5.8% in the past year. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for AGS 2024 sales and EPS indicates a rise of 3% and 1,873.3%, respectively, from the year-ago period’s estimated levels.