There’s no business like snow business!
Over the last 12 months Australia’s ski fields have been a significant contributor to economic growth, with the visitor economy soaring to $30 billion, reflecting growth of 20%.
The double-digit rise from visitor and local spending across Victorian and New South Wales snowfields created the equivalent of more than 10,000 full time jobs.
And yet, due to the perception of snow sports as a luxury holiday pastime, these booming economies are not being credited for their success through government assistance to support their ongoing growth.
Yesterday I was fortunate to speak with Lottie Grimus, who together with the late Hans Grimus, is a pioneer of the snow sports industry in Australia.
She highlighted that behind the leisure and luxury there are huge challenges for seasonal snow businesses, that require astute management in order to ensure they don’t go bust.
Lottie highlighted that snow businesses essentially run like farms, as they need to take a lot of the same variables into account: weather and climate, managing stock levels, staffing, and logistics.
And the snowfields have another thing in common with farming: feeding Chinese demand.
China’s President Xi has declared that he wants his country to be dominant force in winter sports by the time the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics roll around, and he’s pumping in money to make it happen. As a result, Chinese demand on Australian snowfields has never been higher!