NGF TOP 100 BUSINESSES IN GOLF
The PGA TOUR is the world’s biggest, richest and most powerful platform in professional golf, a $2 billion business that oversees far more than the tournaments and star players that fans see playing for millions of dollars in prize money every week.
The PGA TOUR is technically a tax-exempt membership group of professional golfers that plays about 130 official-money tournaments on six tours – the PGA TOUR, PGA TOUR Champions, Web.com Tour, PGA TOUR Latinoamérica, Mackenzie Tour – PGA TOUR Canada and PGA TOUR-China. But the PGA TOUR’s interests extend much further, including the tee time marketplace with EZLinks Golf LLC and its TPC Network that’s comprised of more than 30 premier private, resort and daily fee golf properties (TPC Sawgrass at the TOUR’s Ponte Vedra Beach headquarters is the most famous among them).
While there’s occasionally some confusion among golfers and non-golfers alike, the PGA TOUR is a different organization than the PGA of America, which is the membership organization for the nation’s club professionals.
The PGA TOUR and PGA of America were actually affiliated until 1968, when tour players – a small subset of the total PGA membership – broke away and formed the Tournament Players Division in order to gain more control of their finances and tournament schedule. That division was renamed the PGA TOUR in 1975 and the organization’s total revenues would grow from $3.9 million to $229 million over the next two decades. The PGA TOUR reported $1.28 billion in revenue in 2017.
The PGA TOUR’s mission is multifaceted: to entertain and inspire its fans, deliver value to its partners, create outlets for volunteers to give back, generate significant charitable and economic impact in the communities in which it plays, grow the game of golf, and provide financial opportunities for its players.
The PGA TOUR over the years has continued to strengthen its core business (tournaments) and significantly expand its global reach. The TOUR’s members now hail from 25 countries and its events are broadcast to more than 1 billion households in 226 countries and territories – in 23 languages.
The PGA TOUR has firmly established itself as the biggest and most influential professional tour in the game, in many respects shaping the way the sport is perceived and consumed.
Virtually all tournaments are organized as non-profit organizations that help the PGA TOUR maximize its charitable giving. And that giving is substantial, with total donations that exceed $2.6 billion all-time.