Silver Mountain for sale

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After 16 years of ownership, Silver Mountain Resort's parent company JELD-WEN is planning to sell the ski resort and water park in a series of sealed-bid auctions set to take place between January and April 2013.

Silver Mountain General Manager Jeff Colburn said the ski resort would continue to stay open through the ski season and beyond despite the planned auctions to sell the ski resort in pieces as different business units.

"(Silver Mountain) is going to continue to run regardless of if it sells or not," Colburn said. "It's a business, and it's making money."

The auctions will be conducted by Waterford Development Corp. of Needham, Mass., in conjunction with AmeriBid of Tulsa, Okla. J. Murph Yule, who is coordinating the effort for Waterford Development, who previously worked with Silver Mountain in 1996 when he helped coordinate the sale to Eagle Crest Partners.

"We determined that selling the resort assets to a team of professional operators is the best method to create value for the property for future operations, as well as maximizing the investment for the current owners," Yule said.

Colburn said in a release, JELD-WEN has been offering the resort for sale for quite a while to focus efforts on its core window and door businesses. As Silver Mountain Resort includes the ski area, an indoor water park and nearby golf course community, it has drawn interest from prospective purchasers, but none that could take on the diversity of businesses that comprise Silver Mountain. Consequently, the resort's owner is opting to sell the business units - Silver Mountain, Silver Rapids and Galena Ridge - individually.

Colburn said owner-initiated auctions are becoming increasingly popular in the marketplace for achieving higher values for unique properties such as Silver Mountain.

The first sealed-bid sale is set to begin in early January and will include Silver Rapids and the management division that manages the overnight rentals of the condominiums in the Silver Mountain villages.

The ski area and mountain operations are set to be sold in a second sealed-bid sale around mid-February. Colburn added if the auction process is successful in the first two auctions, the remaining assets - including Galena Ridge - would be offered in later sales.

Yule said the plan of sale offers a chance to sell the ski operations to someone who wants to focus only on improving and building on the ski operations.

"By bringing in a professional water park owner first, we will be able to offer the ski operations to a regional or local operator who can focus solely on the skier experience and building the infrastructure that will allow for a dramatic increase in the amount of skier visits in the future," Yule said.

As JELD-WEN is selling to refocus on the window and door business, the owner's plans to sell were not financially related. Colburn said Silver Mountain recently reported its strongest year in the history of the resort and the resort is excited about an opportunity for new operators to finish the vision of additional ski terrain, new lifts and the additional 9 holes of the golf course to create a unique year round resort.

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