(By Balaseshan) Vail Resorts Inc. (NYSE: MTN) reported wider first-quarter loss due to flat revenue and higher expenses. Revenue marginally missed consensus and the loss was wider than market expectations.
Looking ahead for fiscal 2013, the Broomfield, Colorado-based company said it expects that it will be more difficult to achieve the 27% to 32% Resort Reported EBITDA growth guidance, based on certain most recent booking trends.
Loss per share for the first quarter widened to $1.70 from $1.54 in the year-ago quarter, wider than market expectations of a loss of $1.59.
Net revenue was $116.4 million, roughly flat from last year, yet missing consensus estimates of $116.69 million.
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Revenue from the company's Mountain segment increased 4.5%, while down 2.0% at Lodging. Real Estate segment revenue declined 9.2%.
"Our first fiscal quarter is historically a loss quarter since our mountain resorts are not open for winter ski operations during the period. The quarter is driven primarily by our late summer mountain activities, dining, retail and lodging operations, and administrative expenses for our year-round employees," said Rob Katz, Chief Executive of Vail Resorts.
Vail Resorts said it observed improving trends in summer business in both Mountain and Lodging operations from improved summer visitation in mountain resorts driving increased summer activities revenue, higher lodging RevPar and improved dining revenues.
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The company said its Lodging business also benefited from increased group business at Keystone, as well as the addition of a new national park property, Flagg Ranch, partially offset by lower results at Grand Teton Lodging Co. (GTLC) summer national park business, which was impacted by the effects of wildfires in the area.
Sales of season passes through December 2, 2012 for the upcoming 2012/2013 ski season were up about 5% in units and about 8% in sales dollars versus last year.
"We will know more about the season after the holidays and intend to address our fiscal 2013 guidance when we release our ski season metrics in mid-January," said Katz.
In addition, Vail Resorts said its Board of Directors has declared a quarterly cash dividend on common stock of $0.1875 per share, payable on December 27 to shareholders of record on December 19.
MTN is trading down 9.01% at $50.81 on Tuesday. The stock has been trading between $37.54 and $59.49 for the past 52 weeks.