NGF TOP 100 BUSINESSES IN GOLF
Mitsubishi Chemical/Graphite Shafts (MCA Golf) and Aldila are among the world’s biggest manufacturers of carbon-based composite shafts and now operate – at least within the U.S. — out of the same headquarters in Carlsbad, California.
Aldila, Inc. in 2013 merged with Mitsubishi Rayon America, a wholly-owned subsidiary of MRC and part of the Mitsubishi Chemical Holdings Corporation group.
In 2017, Mitsubishi Rayon changed its name to Mitsubishi Chemical, a change that coincided with MCA Golf and Aldila moving into a new 25,000 square foot shared facility in Carlsbad.
MCA Golf is unique in that it makes golf shafts from scratch, including creating all the critical raw materials that make up the shaft (the monomer, acrylic fiber, carbon fiber, resin, and prepeg).
MCA has developed more than 1,000 different formulations of resin and over 100 types of fiber over the past 30 years to be used in performance-based applications. That includes premium golf shafts in which the combination of resins and fibers is integrated to optimize performance. Diamana is the most well-known MCA brand, while the company’s other popular golf shafts made at their facility outside Tokyo include Tensei, Kuro Kage and Fubuki.
Aldila spans three primary end markets: carbon-based pre-impregnated composite fibers, graphite golf shafts and archery products (Victory Archery). The company says it has more high performance graphite shafts in play on the PGA Tour than any other and major OEM’s account for approximately one-third of the company’s sales. Popular shaft offerings include DVS, NV, RIP, DVS Proto Hybrid, VooDoo, VS Proto, VS Proto Hybrid.
Jim Flood, the so-called Thomas Edison of golf, a master tinkerer, club and materials developer, founded Aldila in 1972. The company takes its name from an Italian song of the 1960s that translates roughly as “far beyond.”
Aldila’s 2013 absorption by Mitsubishi Rayon was a significant move in the company’s recent history. The numbers bear out Aldila’s primacy on tour and the Victory acquisition adds a measure of diversification to the company portfolio.
Additionally, existing under the Mitsubishi umbrella offers both the physical and capital resources of Mitsubishi Chemical and its shafts.
Aldila holds the distinction of being the first graphite shaft brand to be offered as the stock option on a major OEM’s driver: Callaway’s 1991 “Big Bertha with Aldila.”