Nugget

Les Otten Chronology

  • 1972 – Les Otten hired by Sherburne Corporation to work at Sunday River in the management training program, soon promoted to manager.
  • 1980 – Otten purchases Sunday River from the Sherburne Corporation.
  • 1994 – Otten forms LBO Enterprises, which purchases Attitash Bear Peak (NH).
  • 1995– LBO Enterprises purchases Sugarbush (VT).
  • 1996 – LBO purchases Mt. Cranmore (NH).
  • 1996 – In his biggest deal to date, Otten purchases S-K-I, owners of Killington (Vt.), Mt. Snow, Haystack (Vt), Waterville Valley (N.H.) and a 51 percent interest in Sugarloaf. Due to antitrust concerns about concentration of ski resort ownership in New England, the company, now renamed American Skiing Company, is required to divest of Waterville Valley and Mt. Cranmore.
  • 1997 – American Skiing Co. (ASC) buys Wolf Mountain in Park City, Utah, which is renamed The Canyons.
  • 1997 – ASC buys Heavenly and Steamboat (California.)
  • Nov. 6, 1997 – ASC issues an initial stock offering, or IPO, where stock starts trading at $18 per share. The stock quickly falls and never regains that level.
  • 1999 – Due to a high level of debt and the need to raise money for capital expenses and more resort acquisitions, ASC brings in Oak Hill Capital Partners, owned by Texas billionaire Robert Bass, on a preferred stock basis.
  • 1999 – 2000 When ASC cannot pay the interest due on Oak Hill’s preferred stock, more stock is issued to Oak Hill in lieu of cash, eventually giving them control of the company.
  • 2001 – ASC weighs a merger with Meristar Inc, a resort company, but it is called off.
  • 2001 March – Les Otten is removed as CEO of ASC by Oak Hill, which now controls the company, but he retains a seat on the board.
  • 2001 Otten helps form an investor group to buy the Boston Red Sox.
  • 2002 – ASC is delisted from the New York Stock Exchange for failing to meet the requirements for stock listing.
  • 2006 – ASC continues program of selling off resorts to meet its remaining debt obligations, and prepare for dissolution of the company. In Dec., 2006, ASC announces the sale of Steamboat.
  • 2007 – February, deals are announced by ASC to sell off Killington, Pico, Attitash and Mt. Snow.
  • 2007 – Les Otten resigns from the ASC board, and then mounts an unsuccessful bid to buy back Sugarloaf and Sunday River from ASC.
  • 2007- In September, ASC files papers with the Securities and Exchange Commission officially dissolving the company.

— Marian McCue