There are many prospects that the golf market this year is dark. In the background, there is a prospect that the economic indicators of many countries around the world, including Korea, will deteriorate as the United States, which had previously been out of money to endure the Corona 19 era, raised interest rates. Korea, which relies on exports and trade, suffers even more due to the high exchange rate.
Looking at the golf market alone, it is said that the golf industry, which has seen special treatment due to the coronavirus infection (Corona 19), has passed its peak and entered a decline phase. The price of expensive golf course memberships, which had soared without knowing how high the sky was, is rapidly declining. This is also linked to the decline in real estate prices coupled with concerns about an economic downturn.
Golf course green fees stopped rising after last summer and turned downward, and there are already rumors that empty time is appearing one after another in the provinces. The fact that young MZ generations, who were crowded during the corona quarantine period, are leaving expensive golf and moving to other sports as quarantine restrictions are lifted is also the basis for the decline.
However, if you think about it again, it is a process of abnormal normalization. If the heat of golf was overheated in the past, the current concerns in the golf world are rather deflated. If it is a process of normalization, it is extremely necessary and natural. Some of the golf courses that used to make profits with outrageous green fees should now receive a cold-hearted evaluation from consumers.
If you look into golf tours, the market and the board are growing again. The PGA Tour, the world’s best tour, will be held in 47 tournaments until September with a total prize money of 572.2 million dollars (747.2 billion won). Among them, 17 premium competitions will be held with a total prize money of 20 million dollars (26.1 billion won), which is twice as high as last year. It also has the character of resisting the volume offensive of the LIV golf league, which was suddenly created with the oil money of the Middle East.
The players who moved to Liv Golf include veteran players like Phil Mickelson who have over 1,000 players, Sergio Garcia in their 40s, and Lee Westwood. Dustin Johnson, Brooks Koepka, and Cameron Smith are the main players, but their sustainability is unknown. In particular, there are no main broadcasters or other corporate sponsors, so it is being held like an event competition.
Last year, Jeon In-ji won the major championship. [Photo = Getty Image Korea]
The LPGA Tour also holds 33 tournaments this year, and the prize money is $101.4 million (132.4 billion won), a significant increase from last year. It is the first time in history that a women’s tour has exceeded $100 million. It is five times larger than the total prize money of 27.7 billion won in 30 tournaments of the KLPGA Tour, which has grown rapidly in the past few years.
This disparity is not limited to prize money. Outstanding female players from each country head to the LPGA Tour. This is why top players from Thailand, Japan and Europe head to the US tour. Last year, the U.S. Women’s Open cost 10 million dollars, which was higher than the prize money of most men’s PGA Tour tournaments 안전놀이터. The KPMG Women’s PGA Championship has increased its total prize money to $9 million.
In addition, this year, the Asian Swing in the spring and fall, which was suspended due to Corona 19, will resume on the LPGA Tour. From the end of February, it will continue to be a box office success with competitions sponsored by Korean companies in Los Angeles and Hawaii through Thailand, Singapore and Hainan, China.
In the summer, the National Team Match International Crown, sponsored by the Korean company Hanwha Life Plus, is held, and from mid-October, the Asian Swing tours Korea, Taiwan, and Japan, starting in Shanghai, China. If the tournament is held in Asia, the broadcast time will not be much different from the game held in Korea, and Korean players will lift more trophies.
The fact that this year’s men’s and women’s tour of the United States is more anticipated can be seen from the fact that the prize money has increased, there are more box office factors, and more outstanding players are attracting attention. Im Seong-jae and Kim Joo-hyung have already won the championship this season, becoming key players in the tour’s spotlight.
I wonder if Lee Kyung-hoon will win AT&T Byron Nelson 3 times in a row, and Kim Si-woo, Ahn Byung-hun, and Kim Seong-hyun, who are starting a new rookie season, are expected more than ever to play the so-called ‘Korean Six’. Given that six Korean players have never played in a season, there are plenty of reasons to watch the dawn broadcast above all else.
Four Korean rookies were added, including Yoo Hae-ran, who passed the LPGA Qualifying Series as the top scorer. There is light even in darkness. A dark outlook gives shade to those who see the world darkly, and a bright outlook sheds light on those who want to see the world brightly.