Winter 22 Blog – Key investment crucial for clubs to stay ahead

With record member and visitor numbers, now’s the time to maximise retention by maintaining services and improving the experience on offer. Golf Finance is working with clubs to help secure the best financial packages to make these developments economically sound and sustainable.

It would have been a long shot to predict that a global pandemic would be the catalyst to turn the fortunes of the golf industry around, but here in October 2021 that is exactly where we find ourselves. A majority of golf clubs in the UK find themselves in a markedly improved financial position compared with 18 months ago. Many clubs now boast waiting lists for membership for the first time in years, alongside healthy visitor levels.

A primary spark for this of course due to the fortunate position the sport has enjoyed of largely being able to continue during the pandemic while many other sectors have been closed. With other sports, attractions and activities now available again, golf clubs find themselves at a something of a crossroads as to how they now retain this newfound level of business. Indeed, unless clubs do something to
move themselves and their business forward, many will find themselves back in the position they were pre pandemic.

Golf needs to give real reasons for people to stay in the sport, and show that it is providing value to its customers so that they stay in the game; rather than regressing to the old mentality that people will just join a club, and that will be it. Well planned and proper investment in areas such as purchasing machinery to improve the course, offering enhanced clubhouse and leisure facilities, installing or upgrading irrigation systems, and providing enhanced golf buggy services are all ways clubs can encourage members and visitors to keep playing the game.

Spreading the cost of projects over an appropriate period of time through a suitable finance package can often be an attractive way for clubs to finance such projects as opposed to paying in full for the assets, all up front. By maintaining healthy working capital, this helps clubs maintain good cashflow and provides stability and financial strength for urgent or unexpected needs. Financing capital projects or new assets allows clubs to make accurate fiscal projections and budget properly – all while still moving their business forward to the next level, ultimately giving the best chance to retain and maintain membership and visitor numbers. Important (and often vitally needed) machinery purchases, key plans and new club developments are
commonly shelved by golf clubs because there is an apprehension of spending substantial sums of money, but with proper financial advice clubs can decide on the best way to budget and obtain a package that is right for them.

Managing director Ian Henderson said: “Golf Finance will always research and negotiate for a competitive package with the flexibility to suit our clients’ own circumstances and cashflow. Our aim is to help them structure their finances to attain the best results for
their members.”

The Golf industry is a positive place right now – let Golf Finance work with you and your club to move forward and maintain that.

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