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Who are the movers and shakers in the ski industry?

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 

Outside of professional racers and freeskiers, who are the movers and shakers of the ski industry?

I'm referring to the group of people that the resort managers who would ask to be in their focus group sessions if they ever had them. The folks that can have input on new lift chairs, ski terrain, and are otherwise influential in the ski industry.


Or those folks that can influence the boot makers, ski manufacturers, etc, on the qualities of new ski gear.

 

Appreciate the response

post #2 of 11
You pretty much named most of the movers and shakers in your post. Pro skiers, both race and freeskiers. Ski area owners/ managers. Manufacturers.

Another one is ski media. Mags like Ski, Powder, Freeskier,etc. Film production companies like Matchstick and WarrenMiller.

Finally, there are the professional organizations. PSIA/AASI, NSP, etc.

Not a completely exhaustive list, but covers most of The bases.
post #3 of 11
Might help to know the goal here. I feel like you've shot gunned all the possible types of focus groups, sort of losing the "focus" part.
post #4 of 11

Duh - Epicski S'obvious.

 

 

Resorts - well they can datamine and get a hell of  a lot of relevant info especially where they've RFID enabled all lifts.  Pretty easy to map how people move over the mountain with that, you could even RFID lodge doors and checkouts to see how long they spend in there and how much correlation there is with spending . Non local visitors also get surveyed to death (we're so easy to whore ourselves out for a free choccy chaud)  but see my view has had limited success in that I've yet to see places like Squaw opening boundaries and any US resort install a Mooserwirt/Folie Douce style apres bar mid mountain.

 

Equipment - I'd bet good shops get a lot of input both through hard data (orders, sales) and feedback on what customers are asking for, what edges the purchase when there is a choice and of course what they believe are good products they can push hard.

post #5 of 11

The accountants

post #6 of 11

Movers and Shakers?  Those are the people with money.

Influencers?  Us.  What we talk about on this site gets noticed.  Some of us have been part of focus groups regarding ski design, graphics, etc. I'm not sure about other stuff listed in the OP such as...

New lift chairs and ski terrain have more to do with engineering, and development inquiries.  

 

Quote:
 

 The folks that can have input on new lift chairs, ski terrain, and are otherwise influential in the ski industry.


Or those folks that can influence the boot makers, ski manufacturers, etc, on the qualities of new ski gear.

 

As for the "boot makers"  Most manufacturers work with pro bootfitters working with them on R & D.  It seems that it has become more in depth the past few years with a relationship with MasterfitU. 

post #7 of 11

I think Andy Wirth is a mover and a shaker, Andy has done a lot to work with the Squalpine Connection. I don't think that it can be argued that he is not moving and shaking things up. Andy started low in the industry and has moved to the position of CEO of a major ski holding company. His appearance on Undercover Boss was marketing genius for the industry. 

 

@Willy Booker the new CEO started off racing at Burke Mtn went up to be a strong USSA racer is now CEO of Fischer Skis. Willy has the fore site in ski development and if anyone can bring Fischer back strong in the US Market it is him.

 

Chris Davenport. We know him to be an avid adventure skier but he also has gone to be the one of the Principles with Kastle USA. 

post #8 of 11
The "movers and the shakers" reminded me of the Coffee Achievers commercials.
Here is one example:
post #9 of 11

I've felt for a long time there should be an ski industry focus group, made up of both veterans and up and coming leaders.

 

Clearly the status quo is not working, as shown by rising lift ticket costs, Gen X and Y not entering the sport as much as Pre Boomers and Baby Boomers are exiting, and continued closures of smaller, independent, community-foucsed ski areas.

post #10 of 11

One international mover and shaker that likely no one on EpicSki has ever heard of is Masayoshi Ohkubo, President and CEO of Nippon Cable a company that I believe was started by his father.

 

Nippon Cable's first direct ski area venture into North America was in 1992 with the purchase of Tod Mountian near Kamloops B.C which they have turned in to Sun Peaks Resort and with this summer's expansion, have made it the second largest ski resort in Canada (in skiable terrain).

 

At the time of the Tod Mtn. purchase Nippon Cable was the largest manufacturer of aerial cable in Asia, owned 5 ski areas in Japan, a luxury golf course in Kelowna B.C AND 40% of Doplymar Lift Co., one of the leading lift companies in the world.

 

That same year Blackcomb, which was owned by Intrawest, was also doing a $50M base development at Mont Tremblant, and they were having Doplymayr instal a lift on the Blackcomb Glacier. Due to having to drill pilons through the glacier for the lift installation and other expenses, Intrawest got into cash flow problems and the next thing you know, as the rumor goes: $20M later, likely in cash, labour and materials, Nippon Cable ends up owning 25% of Blackcomb. A few years later when Intrawest bought Whistler, Nippon Cable anti-ed up to maintain their 25% share.

 

It is most certainly NOT a coincidence that the Peak to Peak Gondola, installed at Whistler/Blackcomb in 2008 for $50M, is a Doplmayr.

 

It is no surprise that all the chairs at Sun Peaks are Doplmayrs and probably not a coincidence that the only surviving pre Nippon Cable chair from the Tod Mtn. days is also a Doplmayr, circa 1980.

 

Btw, Masa's Bar & Grill at Sun Peaks is named after MASAyoshi Ohkubo

post #11 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by soulskier View Post
 

I've felt for a long time there should be an ski industry focus group, made up of both veterans and up and coming leaders.

 

Clearly the status quo is not working, as shown by rising lift ticket costs, Gen X and Y not entering the sport as much as Pre Boomers and Baby Boomers are exiting, and continued closures of smaller, independent, community-foucsed ski areas.

 

In "adjusted" dollars, skiing is more of a bargain than it was in the 80's.(generally speaking) Your $80 lift ticket today equals a $26 ticket in 1980.

Yes, that's over 200% inflation (or devaluation to be more accurate)

 

The kids aren't entering the sport because they don't have jobs! Plus the mittens keep them from being able to text every thirty seconds or so....

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