Last Update :5/17/2018

May Perspective: NGF says "Golfer base growing again!"

Dear Golf Industry Professional:
It's mid-May and unfortunately, at least on the weather front, it hasn't gotten any better since last month's edition for the US east of the Rockies geographies.  The Players Championship is behind us (the so-called 5th Major which now, oddly, resides in May) with Tiger 3.0 eclipsing the headline of who actually won (Webb Simpson) in most of the golf entertainment media dailies.  While it's not "right," Tiger headlines will always outdraw who actually carded the win so one can't fault them for simply playing to the audience and their ultimate goal of attracting the most eyeballs.

Back in the golf industry operational world, the NGF followed its annual symposium in Dallas in early May with their "new and improved" greens-in-regulation report (oops, Golf Industry Report, both GIR) that Publisher Jim Koppenhaver describes as "Facts, sunny-side up" in this month's lead article.  As in every profession, a peer will have a different perspective than the general audience and sees truth as well as material omissions depending on the rigor and underlying agenda of the publisher.  Click here to get Jim's observations on this year's missive and the grand "pivot" of looking at the participant base augmented by Off-Course only Participants (range-only + TopGolf + simulator players) which results in the golfer base now magically once again "growing":

In addition, the May issue covers the following topics, none of which you'll find in any other industry trade publication, guaranteed:

  • Contributing Editor Stuart Lindsay outlines his firsthand experience in multi-channel distribution and the challenges faced by Callaway in balancing inventory on their popular Rogue X irons revealing a potential blind spot relating to green grass outlets vs. stores and online retailers.  In today's consumer environment, golfers are going to go where they get them cheaper and faster, neither of which favor the longstanding bedrock of golf equipment sales, the green grass shop/PGA Professional.
  • Editor-in-Chief Jim Dunlap outlines what's being heralded by architect Forrest Richardson as a win-win-win redevelopment of the former Palo Alto Municipal course into Baylands Golf Links.  This features a significant municipal investment bet as well as a novel management contract structure (and price tag) that will bear watching in '18 and beyond to see if it's feasible, the future or a farce as the industry landscape continues to shift, market-by-market and at varying pace.  Similar to Harding Park to the north, it will also be a pricing experiment with locals, area residents and "everyone else" paying different rates and relying on the "everyone else" golfers to subsidize (relatively) affordable golf for the locals. 
  • Plus the monthly Industry Scorecard (the only integrated scorecard of multi-source performance indicators) including the April weather impact results (down again) and the March YtD Utilization (way up, again a result of rounds declining less than weather).  We also chart the monthly timeseries for the year of Golf Playable Hours and Utilization while our Market Focus continues with the profile of Detroit, MI as this month’s Market Focus which registers as the 20th healthiest of the Top 25 US Golf Markets in our annual ranking.

We recognize and thank our continuing sponsors; KemperSports, Troon Golf, Bayer CropScience and EZLinks Golf.  For all those service providers and suppliers to the golf industry out there with the latest-and-greatest to offer to the industry thought-leaders who read our monthly publication, might we suggest considering joining our merry little band through our most popular 12-month sponsorship program? (offered at an improved value relative to our entry-level six month sponsorship rate)  Twelve-month sponsors also receive all Pellucid industry-standard reports (State of the Industry, Outside the Ropes, Monthly Weather Impact Tracking (Nat'l, Reg'l, Markets), Top 25 US Golf Markets Scorecard and National Golf Consumer Franchise Health Scorecard). Sponsorship provides monthly exposure to approximately 30K industry leaders and followers and associates your brand with Pellucid’s effort to expand intelligent thinking on today's most challenging industry issues.  For more "opportunistic" spenders, we might suggest one of our smaller-bite Ad Partner programs for those who may not be able to make a 6 or 12-month commitment (as short as 3 months are now available) or who may not need a half page or more exposure (quarter pages now available).  If you're interested in knowing more about sponsorship opportunities or are interested in a preview of our ad partner options, contact Editor-in-Chief Jim Dunlap (760-212-3714,

If you know of associates who would benefit from the topics and insights covered in this issue, feel free to forward this email and encourage them to register on the Pellucid website  ( to join the conversation, discussion and debate.

We also want to bring to your attention Pellucid's next generation golf course database, the Internet Golf Course Database (IGDB) with partners Apparation LLC, Never-Search and  We've just completed a manual review of thousands of facilities against the industry's legacy facility database provider and found hundreds of discrepancies in the existence of facilities (they're missing quite a few of the Learning & Practice facilities across the US & they're still carrying 100+ closed facilities), address errors and facility name errors.  While no database will ever be 100% accurate, we were surprised at the quantity and range of inconsistencies as well as the fact that most of the major tee time providers and recommendation sites (like GolfAdvisor) are propagating these phantom facilities and errors 5-10 fold for people doing Google searches online.  Talk about an "echo chamber"...  For more information on our comprehensive database, updated quarterly and refreshed completely every 12 months (all 15K+ US courses), contactt

As always, you can review and order any of Pellucid's range of reports and services  From the numbers and details of how our industry's consumer base is changing at the national level to our individual facility-level services including weather impact (Cognilogic) and market analysis (Golf Local Market Analysis), we'll keep you one step ahead of the competition in this continuing challenging industry landscape.

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