On April 2nd, 2018, we put a fork in our 17-18 ski season and in our historic “Fight The Man. Own The Mountain” campaign. It was one heck of a fork:
Over 700 of you invested your hard-earned money in this campaign for financial sustainability at RED Mountain and together we raised $2,556,250 to let the world know that independence matters.
“It’s hard to believe it’s really over,” says RED CEO and campaign face Howard Katkov. “It basically consumed me and a lot of our team at RED for about for two years”.
“Turns out that spreading the gospel of RED came pretty naturally to him.” jokes Erik Kerr, RED’s Marketing Director. “The campaign over the last two years generated over 1.1 million views from our videos alone.”
On the coat-tails of this campaign that shook up the entire ski industry by being the first crowd-funding of a for-profit resort ever, we did more than “fight the man” with your help. We galvanized people who love quirky and wonderful ski resorts the world over. We helped people appreciate the unique treasures they have in their own backyards. We also won over a LOT of new fans from as far away as the Scottish Highlands and South Africa.
“We all howled when Ski Area Magazine gave us an award for ‘Best Marketing Campaign Masquerading as A Funding Pitch’,” says Katkov. “But it was no masquerade. There are now 743 new owners, and as a result of the Fight The Man campaign that reached so many eyes and ears, we had our best year ever for skier visits, too.”
Aside from lighting up our own social media channels, the feisty campaign was featured in Powder, The Globe & Mail, Yahoo Finance, Bloomberg.com, Outside Magazine, and countless others.
Some people invested in RED for the incredible perks, like family passes and custom skis and boards from Blizzard and Lib Tech. Some people invested because they’ve secretly always wanted to own a ski resort—and where else would you get an actual stake in a Top 20-sized resort for a thousand bucks? A few people invested purely out of spite because they hate what the Mega Corps are doing to skiing through consolidation and acquisition. We took on all comers.
“Whatever your reason for investing in RED, we are proud and thankful for your belief in our product and our community,” says Don Thompson, President and GM. “It was great to see the community rally behind RED from the start and we’re already well under way with our promised improvements. Thank you!”
The $2.5 Million raised was earmarked for on-hill upgrades that would “improve the adventure” for skiers and snowboarders. So far, local-fave Paradise Lodge got a serious facelift—with flush toilets! Next up, we have a number of exciting improvements in the works but you’re going to have to stay tuned for the details. (Rest assured: your money will be used to make your ski day better!)
Here’s how it all went down:
Total Investors Who Are Now OWNERS: 743
$2,560,250.00 CAD raised — 171% of 1.5 Million Goal!
Platforms: StartEngine.com (USA) & FrontFundr.com (CAN)
Smallest single investment: $1,000.00
Average investment across all platforms: $3,400.00
Largest single investment: $25,000.00
“RED Mountain has always been this family affair,” says Katkov. “We started as a community-owned ski hill back in the gold-mining days and we’ve always retained that scrappy independent spirit in the face of corporate homogenizers. That’s just in our DNA. Well, the family got a lot bigger with these 743 new owners, but I know the spirit will stay the same here. For regular skiers and snowboarders to throw down like this means the world to me and to all of us, from lifties to ski instructors. I’m going to miss this campaign but I know that many of you won’t miss our incessant emails [laughs]. Thanks for not hitting Unsubscribe… Over and out!”