Travel club Inspirato opens its books ahead of IPO vote

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Inspirato hopes to go public at a billion dollar valuation. The travel club rents about 400 vacation properties worldwide, including a home in Vail, pictured above.

Founded by two Denver brothers 10 years ago, travel club Inspirato is set to go public through a SPAC deal that could value the company at around $1 billion.

And as part of being a public company, Inspirato opened its books.

The company, which claims 14,000 customers in its travel club offering access to upscale hotels and 400 homes across the country, reported revenue of $166 million through September 2021, according to the SEC filings.

That almost matches revenue for all of 2020. Annual revenue hit $217 million in 2019, before the pandemic.

Inspirato said it expects to lose $14 million in 2022. And the company has reported losses for most of its life: an $11 million loss in 2018 and $6 million in 2020 .

Inspirato paid about $50 million in rent in 2021 for vacation homes, filings show, with 84% occupancy at its properties in the fourth quarter of 2021. The company doesn’t own any vacation properties, and good many of its leases give it the option to bail out with a year’s notice.

The company, which has raised $85 million in venture capital, forecasts in investor documents revenue of $900 million and EBITDA of $100 million by 2025.

It was started in 2010 by brothers Brent and Brad Handler as a business for affluent travelers to book posh accommodations with top-notch customer service.

One of the products the company sells is called the Inspirato Pass, which costs $600 a month and then charges overnight rates for reservations. A midweek stay in late April at an 8,000 square foot ski house in Breckenridge is listed for Inspirato members at $5,000 a night on the company’s website.

Breck Swift 1

Inspirato customers who have plans where they pay for nightly use can reserve a slopeside mansion in Breckenridge for $5,000 per night midweek in April.

Brent is CEO and Brad is Chairman of the Board of Inspirato. The brothers previously co-founded Exclusive Resorts, a similar type of travel club company also based in Denver. They sold their stake in Exclusive Resorts, according to SEC filings, but the two companies still overlap: Exclusive Resorts owns 5% of Inspirato’s stock, according to SEC filings.

And Inspirato leases 18 residences from Exclusive Resorts, according to SEC filings, and paid Exclusive Resorts $16 million in rent.

As a quasi-public company, Inspirato must also share executive compensation.

Brent Handler earned $1 million in 2021 and will earn $12.5 million in equity grants upon closing of the deal, according to filings. If he is made redundant, he receives two years of his salary and keeps his Inspirato Travel subscription.

CFO Web Neighbor earned $620,000 in 2021, filings show, compared to $1 million in 2020.

Brent and Brad Handler are also building vacation properties in Charleston that they have leased to Inspirato, according to filings. They are each building a condo with an estimated monthly lease of $13,000 each, according to SEC filings. And Inspirato is paying about $2,500 a month throughout the build process to offset initial capital costs, according to filings.

Inspirato has 700 employees and leases 45,000 square feet from LoDo for its headquarters, with a lease expiring in 2026.

Inspirato goes public through a merger with special purpose acquisition firm Thayer Ventures. Thayer shareholders will vote on Tuesday whether to approve the merger.

Shares of Thayer Ventures closed at $9.40 per share on Friday. In an investor presentation prepared for the proposed merger, Inspirato values ​​its shares at $10.

Inspirato and Thayer Ventures did not return calls seeking comment.

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