Aron optimistic about SEC probe |

Aron optimistic about SEC probe

Adam Aron

VAIL – Adam Aron, chief executive officer of Vail Resorts, is optimistic that federal regulators will find nothing of “great significance” during an ongoing probe.Aron made the comments Monday after the company disclosed it received two additional subpoenas from the Securities and Exchange Commission. In all, the Avon-based resort operator has received six subpoenas.

Vail Resorts owns and operates Vail, Beaver Creek, Keystone and Breckenridge ski areas in Colorado, Heavenly in Nevada and California, and Grand Teton Lodge Co. in Jackson, Wyo.Although the company received a clean audit for 2004, it has had problems with financial reporting in past years.Vail Resorts announced in October 2002 that it would restate financial results for three years that would wipe out nearly $14 million in combined net income.

The restatement occurred because Vail booked revenue and profits from nonrefundable initiation fees upfront instead of spreading the money over the life of club memberships.The SEC issued its formal order of investigation in February 2003, and the company restated its financial results again nine months later to adjust several issues.Since then, Vail Resorts has received five subpoenas, according to the company’s quarterly report which was filed with the SEC last week.

During a conference call, Aaron said he was optimistic about the outcome. “They are not going to close this until they have scrubbed our books,” he said.Don Hoerl, deputy director of the SEC’s office in Denver, declined to comment.The “ProxyTalk” conference call was sponsored by San Francisco-based research firm Glass, Lewis & Co.

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