“There are multiple potential (and incremental) bidders at this point, but [we’re] not at liberty to really disclose specifics at this point.”– Steve Wright, General Manager of Jay Peak Resort.
The bidding for Jay Peak has just begun. After Pacific Group Resorts made an initial Asset Purchase Agreement bid of $58 million, it was debated among the ski community as to whether other parties would attempt to acquire the mountain. VTDigger reports at least one other party is interested in making an offer for Jay Peak Resort in Vermont. In a filing from last Thursday, the court-appointed federal receiver, Michael Goldberg, wants to delay a final sale hearing that was scheduled for August 26th. This is because they believe that another bid will likely be submitted soon.
If there are more bids, Golberg will hold an auction on September 7th, and he wants the final sale hearing with the judge regarding the sale to be moved to September 9th or afterward. This follows the EB-5 scandal that rocked the Northeast Kingdom, led to multiple convictions, and had Jay Peak and Burke Mountain enter a federal receivership.
Here’s what comes next: If no other bids come in, which seems unlikely at this point, the federal judge would likely deem the offer from Pacific Group Resorts, as the “highest or otherwise best offer,” and move towards completing the transaction. The federal judge will have to approve the offer. Pacific Group Resorts own various ski resorts, including Ragged Mountain in New Hampshire, Powderhorn in Colorado, Mt. Washington Resort in British Columbia, Wintergreen in Virginia, and Wisp Resort in Maryland.
If competing bids are submitted by September 2nd, the receiver will conduct an auction on September 7th. The first bid would be the $58 million offer from PGR, with the next bid having an initial bid increment of $1.75 million or higher, and then each following bid increment would have to be at least $250,000 or higher. A final sale hearing would then follow on September 9th or afterward to finalize the auction, as Goldberg has filed a motion to move this date back, but it still needs to be approved by the federal judge.
Jay Peak was initially valued at $121 million in 2020 by the town of Jay, but a settlement put the assessed value at around $85 million. So while Pacific Group Resorts gave a large bid, there are likely more groups that are realizing they can bid for Jay and get a great value out of it. In short, it’s going to be an interesting next couple of weeks for the Northeast Kingdom. Image Credits: Jay Peak Resort