NGF TOP 100 BUSINESSES IN GOLF
Mizuno is primarily involved in baseball and golf in the United States, but the company also has a presence in soccer, running, tennis, beach volleyball, and more. Mizuno USA, Inc. operates as a wholly owned subsidiary of its Japanese parent.
The company’s U.S. golf product offerings run the gamut from woods, irons and wedges to gloves and bags. Among Mizuno’s brand ambassadors on the professional tours are Luke Donald, Chris Wood, Jhonattan Vegas, Nick Watney, Lucas Glover and Stacy Lewis.
The Mizuno brand itself was started in 1906 by a pair of Japanese brothers who began by selling baseballs and athletic wear. In the mid-1960s, the company opened what at the time was the world’s largest golf factory. Mizuno’s clubs were enshrined in the Golf Hall of Fame in 1977.
In order to produce more of its trademark Grain Flow Forged irons for the U.S. market, the company set up a 520,000 square-foot facility in Braselton, Georgia in 2015.
“Mizuno is making moves to fast-track growth and further strengthen the brand as a frontrunner in the U.S. sporting goods market,” said former Mizuno USA President Bob Puccini. “Our investment in cutting-edge infrastructure affords us the opportunity to continue growth while also benefitting from the additional resources, efficiencies and service capabilities provided by the new facility.”
Mizuno is fundamentally identified as an iron company by most consumers, but has been a part of significant innovations over the years – among them, introducing the first golf clubs with carbon heads (Vanguard drivers) in 1982 and the first clubs to incorporate pure titanium (Ti-110 and Ti-120) in 1990.
Mizuno made a big endorsement of the combo iron set with its latest release, likely in a bid to appeal beyond its rabid legion of blade enthusiasts. The five-model MP-18 line spans from the MP-18 MB players iron to the MP-18 MMC, all of which are designed to be mixed and match to form a set of irons.
It’s also noteworthy that Mizuno irons, per GolfWRX, are the most widely-adopted among PGA Tour players who are not under contract to play a particular company’s equipment.