Origin to Lead Saddleback Mountain Branding Project
February 20, 2020
Award-winning marketing agency hired by Boston investment firm Arctaris Impact Fund to revitalize Maine’s third largest ski mountain.
MONTREAL (February 20, 2020) — Boston-based Arctaris Impact Fund, LP, announced Friday, January 31 the official purchase of Saddleback Mountain Ski Resort for $6.5 million. The firm plans to invest $38 million into Maine’s third-largest ski area and has tapped award-winning outdoor marketing agency Origin to lead Saddleback Mountain’s rebranding.
The mountain is expected to reopen at the end of 2020. Upgrades will include a high speed detachable quad chairlift, a redesign of the lodge, significant expansion of the snowmaking system and the addition of mountain bike and fatbike trails. The company also plans to hire more than 200 full- and part-time employees.
“Saddleback’s exceptional skiing, laid back culture and beautiful natural environment has created a passionate following for generations,” said Saddleback Resort General Manager Andy Shepard. “The closing of the mountain five years ago has been a loss to New England’s skiing community, but it has also created challenges for the Rangeley community. News of Arctaris’ purchase has a lot of people very excited.”
Saddleback Mountain hired Origin in early February to develop the brand, creative assets and launch strategy. Origin’s process includes an envisioning session with key stakeholders, a deep dive into the brand’s stories and characters and a strategy to meet the organization’s long-term goals.
“Saddleback Resort has a long history of being an incredible mountain,” said Origin Principal MJ Legault. “Even as a Quebecker, I’ve heard tales of this place and have had it on my wish list—both as a brand partner and to ski—for years. We couldn’t be more excited to have the privilege to work with Saddleback in bringing the brand to life and spreading the message of its revival. Their vision for a true community-based, purposeful approach to the relaunch is inspiring.”
Origin has worked with Maine brand LL Bean and brings a deep understanding of the resort industry with branding campaigns developed for Jay Peak Resort, Squaw Valley, Taos Ski Resort, Whistler Blackcomb and several more.
Origin is an outdoor-focused, digitally-driven creative, content and marketing agency. Founded more than 20 years ago, the agency has worked with a multitude of prominent outdoor brands such as Whistler Blackcomb, L.L.Bean, lululemon, Smartwool, The North Face, and many more. With offices in Montreal and Whistler, as well as a US subsidiary based in Vermont, Origin provides a bilingual and suite of capabilities to the outdoor brands it helps succeed and grow in both Canada and the US. For more information about Origin, please visit www.originoutside.com. Subscribe to Origin’s “Insights On The Outdoors” monthly newsletter at https://www.originoutside.com/newsletter-sign-up.
About Saddleback Mountain
Located in the beautiful High Peaks and Lakes district of western Maine, Saddleback Mountain was founded in 1960 and has grown its reputation for exceptional snow, some of the best skiing terrain in the East and a friendly, laid- back culture. At 4,120 feet of elevation and 2,000 feet of vertical, Saddleback is Maine’s third biggest mountain, and it’s base elevation of 2,100 feet is Maine’s highest. Just below the mountain is the iconic village of Rangeley, which is the gateway to Rangeley Lake, Mooselookmeguntic and Richardson Lakes.
About Arctaris Impact Fund
Arctaris Impact Investors, LLC, is a Boston-based impact investment fund manager focused on revitalizing disinvested cities and targeted rural communities. The firm has launched five funds over 10 years through partnerships with institutional investors, CRA banks, foundations, the U.S. Treasury Department, and state economic development agencies. In consideration of Arctaris’ commitment to deliver positive social impact in inner cities and rural communities, the firm has historically qualified for a set of federal and state government programs available to qualified managers. Arctaris has a successful track record of partnering with state and federal government agencies to achieve its dual mandate of creating jobs and generating returns for its limited partners.