New York (CNN Business)When Tiger Woods won the Masters in April, it solidified a stunning comeback for the golf legend — and it made the sellers of clubs, balls and other equipment very happy as well.
Now, the golf industry is hoping that Tiger’s resurgence will continue at the US Open championship in Pebble Beach this weekend.
“Its been a terrific start to the year with Tiger winning at the Masters. Any time you see a transcendent athlete complete a comeback story the way he did, it lit up the world in a way only he could,” said David Abeles, CEO of golf equipment company TaylorMade, in an interview with CNN Business.
TaylorMade, which was once part of Adidas (ADDDF), is now a private company. Adidas sold TaylorMade to private equity firm KPS Capital Partners in 2017 for $425 million.
The company doesn’t disclose specific sales figures. But Abeles said that the company is seeing strong demand for its products in the United States, Canada, Japan and Korea so far this year.
And he thinks that the continued success of Tiger Woods, as well as popular champion golfers such as Brooks Koepka, Rory McIlroy and Dustin Johnson, should give the whole industry a boost. All four use TaylorMade clubs.
“There is a lot of energy in the sport right now. That energy breeds interest and, hopefully, participation,” Abeles said. “Our equipment business is very strong.”
The Tiger Woods comeback is helping publicly traded golf companies, too.
Shares of Callaway Golf (ELY), the maker of Big Bertha clubs, and Acushnet (GOLF), which sells Titleist balls, drivers and other golf gear, each rose more than 1% the day after Tiger’s Masters victory. Tiger Woods does not endorse either company, though.
Nike (NKE), which makes Tiger Woods golf apparel, rose as well following Tiger’s Master’s win.
Nike and Callaway Golf were not available for comment about any Tiger bump. Acushnet declined to comment. Read More