Asian golf balls are rising

By: October 8, 2009

While golf ball manufacturers are stampeding us into lure of branding, it is worth to look around in golf ball market. When I am considering to buy new golf ball, I always consider my wallet size and handicap level. Even though it is hard to avoid the influence of golf ball manufacturers' 1/1 page size image ads in golf magazines (Golf Magazine, Golf Digest or Golf Monthly). Yes, handicap factor is an important issue, since if you do not have handicap below 25, it does not matter what kind of golf ball are using it will not fly farther on. Same idea can be applied to golf clubs as well.

But what is my point?

Although more and more well known (Titleist, Nike Golf, Callaway, TaylorMade etc.) golf brands are made in China or in neighboring countries, but there are some local enterprises that worth to mention.

Here are two from the Far East, Seoul Nassau Golf Ball from South Korea and Vplus from Taiwan. Both of them have a low brand awareness, but they are confirms with USGA and R&A rules. Two simple golf ball brands that fit to the play of beginner and intermediate golf players.

I am really fond of Nassau's business strategy that says: "Seoul Nassau will steadily work to improve our product over time". When can say the same about our golf play, can't we. With defining compelling positioning to our product/brand together with reliable distribution network, these and similar other golf equipment manufacturers can gain markets, not just in Eastern Europe and in emerging markets, but also in UK, Germany, Sweden and other developed golf markets. All this in the face of big golf brands. In premature markets, but also in developed ones, the challenge is to what we accustom prospects.

We still have the option of lake balls/recycled balls. Some people say, the performance of lake balls fall 10-20% after reparation. Hmm. This might be true with those golf balls that suffered something really serious "injury".

Here in my blog I discussed the difficulties of promoting golf. This is not just a question of golf architecture and golf course marketing, how you make your golf course affordable and profitable, but it is applicable to golf equipments as well.

This is why I found fair, the French retailer's  Decathlon offer. They do not want to deter those people who have thin wallet  with expensive golf balls, like Callaway and Titleist. They rather came up with a selection where everybody can find his best choice. As far as I know the cheap category is represented by Inesis.

Today, the golf ball market is worth around $550 million in annual sales, with over 850 million golf balls being manufactured and shipped every year. 500-750 million new golf balls are sold in average annually. Out of this number cca. 240 million new golf balls are sold only is US. North County Times' estimate says that we lose annually 2.5 billion golf balls.

Therefore we cannot be surprised that more and more companies want to jump on the "golf ball wagon".