Is Russia viable for a golf business opportunity? – part 1

By: April 10, 2010

As I promised in my previous post, former director of Career Services at Golf Course Superintendents Association of America (GCSAA), Lyne Tumlinson will be my first guest writer here on Golf Business Monitor. So please find below Lyne's first writing about golf business opportunities in Russia.

The Russian Golf Association a couple of years ago touted plans to build 500 golf courses in Russia by 2018. The economy quickly put a dent in that idea as the worldwide recession slowed the pace of new golf course development, while Russian golf courses already in place are now suffering from lack of proper golf course management. A strong case may be made for growing golf business in Russia:

wide expanse of land, growing middle class for public golf business, and a new class of capitalist "biznesmeni" with wealth not seen since the tsarist aristocracy. Reported prediction from KPMG show current international golf industry at $90 mil worldwide; aggregate golf market vol approaches $2 mil in Russia, even at its elementary stage of golf business development. Before you grab your "klutchi" (key in Russian, but also means golf clubs) and head for the Aeroflot (Russian national airlines) ticket counter, however, you should factor some key historical and cultural points into your golf business plan.

Lyne will continue to talk about the Russian golf industry in the next posts.