Transitioning management
in a controversial project...

Bobby Ginn and Ginn Resorts won resounding support from the tiny ski town of Minturn, Colorado (pop. 682) sandwiched between ski giants Vail and Beaver Creek for a massive multi-billion dollar real estate development with golf courses and private ski facilities. The town essentially voted to approve the project based on its relationship with Bobby Ginn himself, a small-town boy who had a strong rapport with members of the community and the Town Council. However, the project was certainly not without controversy. It had opposition within the community and was embroiled in lawsuits. As the real estate market continued to crater through 2009, Ginn and his financial partners decided that it would be best if he focused his energies in other areas of the company and made the decision to transition management of the project to Crave Real Estate, a group familiar with development in ski areas.

The communication of this news was tenuous, given Bobby's role in the project and the relationship he had with the community. If not handled properly, the town residents and media may have perceived that Bobby was being kicked out of the project or that he was abandoning what he had started at Battle Mountain, which could certainly send the project into a tailspin. Julison Communications worked closely with Crave Real Estate to develop the overall communications strategy. We carefully crafted the message and developed a plan to disseminate the information sequentially to the Town Council, media and subsequently the residents of Minturn.

We provided an exclusive to the Vail Daily, which had been the most important media outlet for the project and subsequently granted other interviews with AP and the Denver Post on the day the Vail Daily published their story. From a storyline perspective, the initial wave of publicity surrounding Bobby Ginn's exit from the project and Crave's new role as operating partner was well-received and provided the necessary credibility the company needed both in its ongoing negotiations with the town and with the town's residents going forward.