Whether you like it or not, it looks like the startup company that’s installing flatscreens onto chairlift safety bars is expanding after scoring $1 million during a seed investment round.
BusinessDen reports after a successful pilot program where they installed screens on five of the chairs on the Super Gauge lift at Winter Park’s Mary Jane, Alpine Media Technology got a cash injection that they plan to use for hardware, software development, intellectual property and legal costs. The money came from angel investors and friends and family.
“Not only did we close out our seed round, but we’ve opened up a much larger raise.That’s the final ingredient and the recipe for us to make this our full-time gig.” -Co-Founder Gerrit VandeKemp
Winter Park is expanding the program and more are sure to follow:
“It’ll be on all 104 of the chairs on the Super Gauge. We’ll have the entire chair lift outfitted as well as the new gondola.”
Alpine Media business model doesn’t actually charge the resort for the technology, instead they sell advertising. In the case of Winter Park, they also follow strict protocol as laid out by The U.S. Forest Service where they can only use about one-third of digital displays for ads. Alpine Media says they use 5% for ads. So far their clients include Meier Skis, Outdoor Element, and The University of Denver.
Currently the screens at Winter Park use batteries but the startup has developed a charging panel that charges the screens as the lift passes around the bullwheel:
“We are focusing on ski resorts or areas where there are gondolas, because the only way to deliver enough power to do digital displays on chairlifts and gondolas would be by utilizing our method that we have our patent (pending).”
Here is a quick piece from CBS4 about Winter Park skiers’ reactions to the flatscreen installation:
images from alpine media twitter