All Resort closure could steer business to other Park City firms
Transportation companies see a ‘pretty big void’ after shutdown
September 21, 2017
The sudden closure of All Resort Group could steer more business to other transportation companies.
All Resort Group, a large transportation firm with companies like All Resort Express, Park City Transportation and Lewis Stages under its umbrella, closed on Sept. 14, five months after it sought bankruptcy protection. A company representative said an investment group in Phoenix opted against an acquisition last week, resulting in the closure.
Some of the other transportation companies in Park City say they are considering the potential impact of the All Resort Group shutdown, including the prospects of business increasing as All Resort Group clients seek other options. It is not clear how much of a boost the other companies could enjoy since the former All Resort Group business would be expected to be split between them, but the timing of the shutdown roughly two months prior to the start of the ski season could make the situation more urgent as vacationers book their rides.
The transportation industry in Park City has long been fiercely competitive with firms vying for lucrative trips to Salt Lake City International Airport as well as mainstay customers seeking rides around the Park City area.
"There has to be a vacuum created," said Rob O'Brien, the owner of Ace Transportation, adding that the loss of All Resort Group leaves a "pretty big void" in the industry.
O'Brien said there is perhaps a chance his company, which is widely known as 649-TAXI, can reach agreements with hotels that once had deals with All Resort Group. He said he plans additional advertising and personal contacts with lodging properties and restaurants.
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"The next month or so would be the month to be aggressive, so I'm going to try that," he said.
Another company involved in the industry, Fastaxi, which is a dispatch service for up to 15 companies during the ski season, quickly saw impacts from the closure of All Resort Group. The Fastaxi owner, Diania Turner, said customers were seeking rides to the airport in the days after the closure. The All Resort Group closure left some of the customers disgruntled, she said.
"Already my phones are ringing off the hook," she said, adding, "Our business went up because All Resort went down."
Turner predicted there will be more significant problems as the ski season starts. She said All Resort Group companies provided airport transportation that many other Park City firms are not equipped to deliver since they are not as large. The other ones might not use vehicles that qualify for a permit to operate at the airport, she said.
"Long term, I think it's going to be a disaster come winter," Turner said.
The All Resort Group shutdown impacted several hundred employees across a spectrum of transportation companies under the umbrella of the parent firm. The bankruptcy filing in the spring was meant to allow the company to reorganize with the intention of paying debts. The filing listed between $10,000,001 and $50 million in estimated assets and the same dollar range in estimated liabilities.
Gordon Cummins, a minority owner of All Resort Group and the firm's vice president, said last week he hoped another company will acquire the All Resort Group airport service within the next 30 days. A 30-day timeline would appear to give any potential buyer the opportunity to ensure the service is operational again by the start of the ski season.
Park City Direct, another transportation company, will be one of the firms seeking to capture some of the All Resort Group business. The owner, Charles Vernsey, said his company could possibly increase business from airport trips by 20 percent as transportation firms "come in and pick up the pieces." He said fewer companies will be seeking the same amount of customers.
"More business. Pretty simple. Pretty simple equation," Vernsey said.