Do you remember when Callaway Golf acquired OGIO International for $75.5 million and TravisMathew for $125.5 million in cash in 2017?
Now, we can see a similar acquisition at Acushnet. They recently acquired KJUS, a premium Swiss, global ski and golf sportswear company.
KJUS has today grown to be an unquestioned leader in technical performance wear. They are focusing on performance-minded golfers.
Acushnet expects to continue to run KJUS’s operations from its global and North American headquarters in Hünenberg, Switzerland and Boulder, Colorado.
The ski and golf divisions will be run by long-time company leaders Nico Serena and Brooke Mackenzie, respectively.
Luke Reese, who has been instrumental in the establishment of the KJUS golf business, and Didi Serena will continue their involvement with the Company as special advisors.
Where are the acquisitions of added-value services?
In other sports, we could witness acquisitions of added-value service providers (e.g. Under Armour acquired Endomondo and MyFitnessPal in 2015; Adidas acquired Runtastic; Nike invested in FuelBand, SportWatch, and Nike+ fitness app).
When will the golf industry embrace that performance-minded golfers & PGA Pros not only need premium equipment and apparel but also products and services that can help them in their everyday game?
All of my sources say that the wearable fitness tracker market is standing before a big boom in the coming years.
Technavio says global smart sports equipment market is expected to post a CAGR of over 37% during the period 2019-2023.
My question is:
Would not be more forward thinking and advantageous to invest and acquire such companies whose services & products can have a direct impact on the golfers’ game and life (e.g. sports analytics)?
Around such a product, you can build a loyal and engaged community who will be more likely to buy from you again in the future.
Such products and services could be really attractive for the age-group 25-44 years owing to higher affordability and growth in disposable income.
Here are some interesting products for consideration:
- Swingbyte (Srixon is one of their partners);
- Arccos Golf;
- Game Golf;
- Epson’s M-Tracer Golf Mobile app etc…
Microsoft & TaylorMade’s joint product development the Microsoft Golf Tile seems like does not go well (or probably a failed product).
At the same time, Cobra Puma Golf‘s smart set, Cobra Connect Powered by Arccos is probably the most successful such initiative. They even developed a special grip for this service the Cobra Connect grips.