Continuity of Grandvalira guaranteed in the long term with the addition of Ordino Arcalís to their skiing experience.
Grandvalira has guaranteed its future after adding the Ordino Arcalís resort to their collection. The combination of the two resorts allows them to offer an even more pioneering snow experience, with a total of 240 km of slopes and a visitor influx translating to over 2 million days of skiing. This places the centre among just 7 in the world to have surpassed this figure, according to the world ranking of over 2,000 resorts that Swiss consultant, Laurent Vanat, compiles every year.
The intention to bring an end to the Grandvalira regulatory agreement and the mandate given to NEVASA for the marketing of the joint ski pass was announced in 2017. Aware of the economic advantages for the two companies, the two Parishes and the country as a whole, the heads of SAETDE and ENSISA, with personal mediation by the President of Andorra, Antoni Martí, have worked intensively over the last months to resume the collaborative effort.
This work has been reflected in a continuity agreement for Grandvalira that must be ratified by the governing bodies of SAETDE and ENSISA in the coming days. The agreement aims to lay the foundations for a beneficial future for all parties involved, and for the country as a whole.
It is indefinite, and after 10 years, allows for a two-year period during which either of the parties can declare they are no longer interested in continuing. This time limit assures the future stability of the sector for operators and companies.
It was also established that SECNOA is able to acquire up to 5% of NEVASA's shares, with the board of directors split equally between ENSISA and SAETDE/SECNOA. Despite the change in shareholders, the proposal and adoption of the General Meeting agreements need at least 60% of the NEVASA social capital.
At the same time, as of the 2018-2019 season, Grandvalira will gradually start incorporating products from the Ordino Arcalía resort into their portfolio. SECNOA will contribute to financing NEVASA, following the same criteria as SAETDE and ENSISA.
The agreements also propose a solution removing the Pla de les Pedres sector as a hindrance to the smooth running of the Grandvalira product and its domain, independent of the ownership of the land where ENSISA’s funitel is located.
In the spirit of teamwork, from the current 2018-2019 season, Pas de la Casa-Grau Roig, Soldeu-El Tarter and Ordino Arcális ski schools can give classes in any of the three skiable domains, without any of the resorts paying. However, the three schools won't be able to carry out commercial business in the skiable areas of others.
Plans for the future
The prospect of a stable future, and with ambitious growth plans on the part of all NEVASA members, is the best possible outcome for such a key strategic sector in Andorran economy. In the 2017-2018 season, Grandvalira saw a record increase with a 2% rise in passes sold over the previous year, and skiers from abroad responded well to the commercial strategy pursued over the last three years. The upward trend in international markets saw a 15% rise in monthly income over the year before, and more than 40% over the last three seasons. The Grandvalira continuity agreement means it will be able to keep working with international tourist operators, with the aim of improving visitor diversity travelling to the Principality.
The agreed framework sets the stage for ambitious investments that resorts are planning in order to push the Grandvalira and Ordino Arcalís brand. They aim to increase skiable space, improve food, parking and service facilities, increase skier transport facilities and continue working on the digital transformation that was put into action last season.
A new trail is being blazed in the winter sports sector, with SAETDE, ENSISA and SECNOA hoping to bring great success to both the industry and to the country as a whole.