NGF GOLF 100 FAQs
The GOLF 100 is a first-of-its-kind list created by the NGF to recognize the size and diversity of the golf industry. A strategic fit with the foundation’s unique position as the only association focused on the entire business of golf, the GOLF 100 is an effort to better celebrate the most successful, influential and innovative businesses and organizations in the game.
The U.S. version of the NGF GOLF 100 will be updated and released every two years. There will also be an international list published biennially, opposite the U.S. list.
Included in the list are global companies, organizations or associations with direct involvement with the golf industry that conduct all, a majority or a significant portion of their golf business within the U.S.
A variety of criteria were considered in order to provide multiple pathways onto the NGF GOLF 100, ensuring the list didn’t simply include the “biggest” companies in the game. Among the factors that were weighed during the evaluation process:
- Influence or Clout
- Contributions to the Growth and Vitality of the Game
- Growth Rate & Success
- Leadership (within a particular sector)
- Prominence (within the golf industry overall)
- Contributions to the Societal Good
The NGF’s editorial board is ultimately responsible for the make-up of the GOLF 100, with the assistance and input of experts from each sector of the golf industry. While the criteria are transparent, the selection process is not intended to be purely scientific and at the discretion of the NGF editorial board, which is the ultimate arbiter.
At its essence, the NGF GOLF 100 demonstrates the depth of successful businesses in the game. Not all of them could make the list, with some of those coming up just short in very competitive sectors and receiving Honorable Mention recognition. Others may be positioned to be on the forthcoming international list of top golf businesses, as there is no crossover between the two. The reality is that lists always generate 19th hole discussion and, ultimately, the intent is that this is a positive for golf. Input is always encouraged.
Businesses and organizations were identified by the NGF’s editorial board and grouped into a range of different sectors: Apparel & Accessories, Equipment, Management Companies, Media & Technology, Miscellaneous, Retail and Turf & Course Suppliers.
Each company selected to the list will receive an award and will also be recognized at the NGF’s annual Symposium in the year of presentation. Companies are permitted to use the Top 100 designation in advertising and on their website.
The intent of the NGF’s GOLF 100 is to celebrate those businesses making an impact on the industry and demonstrating success, growth and innovation within their sector, not to debate the merits of who should be No. 1. Invariably, one company or organization might rate highly in one set of criteria, while another has significant prominence in another measure. The NGF works with leading brands throughout the industry on a daily basis, so there is an understanding that comparing Syngenta with Srixon is a futile exercise. As the only trade association that covers all verticals in golf, the NGF has opted to simply list Top 100 companies alphabetically by category.
For the inaugural NGF GOLF 100, our editorial staff chose to group together businesses that fall under the ownership of a single parent company. In some instances, it may be that collective relevance within the golf industry that pushed them onto the list. In other examples, such as with TravisMathew, Ogio and Odyssey all falling under the Callaway umbrella, GolfNow under Golf Channel, or FootJoy and Titleist under Acushnet, there are individual companies that would be probable, or certain, top 100 candidates as standalone brands. In many of these cases in which companies are owned by a single parent entity, they clearly may operate autonomously within their sector of the golf industry. The decision ultimately came down to a desire to recognize as many noteworthy companies in the game as possible. When multiple companies are being recognized under a single ownership group, they will also be given prominent individual mention in a corporate/association profile on the NGF website. Like many initiatives, the format and structure of the NGF GOLF 100 will continue to be evaluated in future editions of the list.
The intent of almost any good list is to generate some dialogue or debate. This is particularly true when looking at such a diverse industry such as golf and trying to evaluate and weigh the accomplishments, innovations and successes of businesses in very different sectors. The criteria for the NGF GOLF 100 intentionally extend far beyond revenues, so innovative companies that have created a niche in the market or greatly contributed to the growth and vitality of the game may get recognized for that significance. Golf is many ways is fortunate and unique in having so many meaningful businesses, likely far more than most major sports.
No. However, almost 80 percent of the businesses and associations represented in the GOLF 100 have membership affiliation with the NGF, to some extent. The NGF is unique in that it is the only trade association involved in all sectors of the golf industry, and it is supported by a myriad of golf-related businesses in every category. These companies – and NGF member courses, clubs, associations, management groups, designers and media – rely on NGF research and resources to support and influence their strategic planning and decision-making. It’s another reason the GOLF 100 is apropos to the NGF’s mission.