Purgatory and Kirkwood Close to Closing the Deal


Durango, CO Nov. 30--The deal between Purgatory and the principal shareholders of Kirkwood Resort is almost done. Vincent Duncan, senior CEO and principal owner of Durango Ski Corporation, which owns Purgatory, announced that an agreement has been signed with the newly formed Durango Resort Company for a partnership interest in Purgatory resort.

The Durango Resort Company, managed by Charles Cobb (CEO of Cobb Partners) and Gary Engle (CEO of Equis Financial) will invest $6 million in Purgatory Resort. Cobb and Engle are former senior executives of Arvida Corp. and Disney Development Company, which are Walt Disney real estate subsidiaries.

"We are particularly impressed with this group's level of experience in resort development, especially in the kind of areas that would allow Purgatory to reach it's full potential," said principal owner of Durango Ski Corporation, Vincent Duncan.

This signing is the first step to solidify the two companies' commitment to the formation of a new partnership while also setting the stage for a 30-day period in which various permits and licenses will be set up for transfer to the newly-formed company.

On Dec. 9, a preliminary closing will occur and pass management responsibility to the newly formed Durango Resort Company. A final closing is expected to complete the deal in the spring 2000.

The terms of the transaction are undisclosed and the future of both resorts is uncertain at this time. However, speculation is that the new owners will make some changes.

"Our investor group anticipates significant operations and marketing synergies from operating multiple resorts," reported Cobb. "We see ourselves as a niche investor group that partners with existing owners to develop high-quality, year-round recreational facilities."