April 19, 2017 (Jay, VT) – Leisure Hotels and Resorts, the management team appointed by a federal court receiver to run and maintain Jay Peak and Burke Mountain ski resorts during the transition period of a highly-publicized investor fraud case, is being commended for not only stabilizing the resorts operations and accounting practices, but also increasing profits by nearly 500% since taking control of the properties in April, 2016.
Michael Goldberg, the court-appointed receiver, who took control of the properties one year ago when fraud allegations surfaced, announced a $150M settlement Thursday in Montpelier alongside Governor Phil Scott.
Thursday’s settlement would resolve a complaint brought by Goldberg in May 2016 claiming financial services firm Raymond James assisted and profited from the alleged fraud, in which investors poured millions of dollars into seven projects in the towns of Jay, Newport and East Burke through the federal EB-5 visa program, which offers a path to permanent residency for foreign nationals who help to create jobs in economically disadvantaged regions.
During the news conference on Thursday detailing the settlement, Goldberg commended Leisure Hotels and Resorts for its management of the Jay Peak Resort whose profits over the past year have increased from $1.8 million to nearly $10 million. The specialized management company increased both revenue and the resort’s year-round popularity through numerous off-season offerings including an average of 80 weddings per summer and the popular Porsche Parade, a weeklong event in June that draws thousands of guests. Additionally, this season’s substantial snowfall totals have produced a strong seasonal ski campaign.
“They (Leisure Hotels and Resorts) have made it more efficient,” said Goldberg. “They organized the accounting which was a mess and made the hotel more profitable. The whole place ran smoothly under very difficult circumstances.”
Leisure Hotels and Resorts was instrumental in identifying and appointing Steve Wright, the property’s past CMO, and appointing him general manager, while also retaining key employees when the fraud allegations first came to light. “Our success is due in part to the strong management and employee teams we have in place,” says Steve Olson, CEO of Leisure Hotels and Resorts. “The stability we provided, in the face of inherent chaos, enabled us to really focus on resort strategy, keeping things sustainable, and ultimately increasing profit.”
About Leisure Hotels and Resorts
Leisure Group of Companies, a Third-Party Professional Hotel and Resort Management firm, has a 33-year track record of managing, brokering and building hotels, resorts and condominiums, as well as managing distressed assets in a smooth and cost-effective manner – especially during the critical receivership/ transition phase. Leisure Hotels and Resorts specializes in independent operations and works with most major branded hotels of Intercontinental Hotels Group (IHG), Hilton, Hyatt and Choice Hotels. For information, visit http://www.leisurehotel.com.