In a press release that ended months of speculation and rumors, the PGA of America and PGA Golf Exhibitions jointly announced on Thursday a list of companies planning to attend the 2022 PGA Merchandise Show in Orlando. The press release also shows which companies decide not to participate.
More than 450 companies have registered for the show and more than 600 will be displaying their goods and services on Demo Day on January 25th at the Orange County National Golf Center and January 26-28 at the Orange County Convention Center. Including Bridgestone, Cleveland / Srixon / Xxio, Cobra / Puma Golf and Ping.
Companies skipping this year’s PGA show include Callaway, Mizuno, PXG, TaylorMade, Titleist, Tour Edge, and Wilson.
TaylorMade has not participated in the PGA Show since 2018. PXG, founded in 2014, has never had a booth or was officially part of the PGA Merchandise Show.
“The PGA of America values the companies that come to Orlando to connect personally with our members and to partner with our association to grow the game,” said Jim Richerson, president of the PGA of America. “We are focused heavily on addressing critical industry problems and providing timely solutions to our professionals at the PGA Show to help move the business of sport forward. It will be a welcome reunion for our members and the industry, and we look forward to working with and supporting our PGA partners and hundreds of other companies who are committed to helping thousands of PGA professionals achieve theirs Achieve business goals at PGA Show 2022. ”
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In October the PGA of America and the PGA Golf Exhibitions take place announced that the 2022 PGA Show would be held in person. In January, the PGA Merchandise Show 2021 took place virtually due to the COVID-19 pandemic. PGA of America members, brand representatives, and media members gathered in bespoke portals and conference call rooms to share ideas, do business, hold educational symposiums, and network.
Golf week spoke to representatives of several brands who decided to skip this year’s show last month. Everyone said that while they fully supported the PGA of America and its members, they had to weigh numerous factors before making final decisions.
Unlike the years leading up to the pandemic, when typically more than 40,000 people and 1,000+ brands attended the show, businesses are forced to weigh the cost of a week’s stay in Orlando and the health risks that come with it Employees during the indoor fair gather the COVID-19 pandemic.
Brands that post 50 to 100 people can easily spend hundreds of thousands of dollars and potentially over a million dollars on PGA show-related expenses. Some record growth companies like Callaway and Titleist didn’t have to pay that cost when the PGA show went virtual to justify last year.
Large companies also have sales reps and regional representatives who are tasked with developing relationships and generating business at the local and regional levels year-round. As a result, they may not see the PGA Merchandise Show as an event that is required to book new orders.
Supply chain problems and massive demand for equipment over the past year have resulted in long backlogs, with club orders often taking months to fulfill. Some industry insiders believe customers could become frustrated until orders can be completed faster if consumers are pushed to buy new clubs.
An insider veteran said Golf week, “I think (it’s) just too much of a fiddle for anyone to invest that kind of dollar with the current state of affairs.”
The PGA Merchandise Show began in 1954 and is not open to the public. It is designed to act as a bridge between the members of the PGA of America and the golf industry. It connects the men and women who own and operate golf facilities and teaches classes with the companies that manufacture and design everything from clubs to ball washers, golf course operating systems to trophies. Any product seen on a course will likely be on display at the PGA Merchandise Show for most years.
The PGA Merchandise Show also serves as a place for PGA of America members to attend training sessions and symposiums to improve their golf education. The PGA Merchandise Show is also one of the premier networking events in the golf world. Representatives from local public institutions to elite private clubs and world-class resorts walk the aisles, attending cocktail parties, and playing golf in the Orlando area.
“Buyers have expressed a need to catch up in terms of goods and services and are missing personal experience with products and corporate governance,” said Marc Simon, vice president of PGA Golf Exhibitions. “There is a desire to return to the national peer networking and educational and industry programs that only PGA Show Week can offer through the PGA of America’s collaboration with allied partners such as the National Golf Course Owners Association Dealers and others. We look forward to offering the golf community an extraordinary event experience. ”
It remains to be seen whether the companies that chose not to attend the PGA Merchandise Show 2022 will return in 2023 and in years to come, or whether the show will be forced to change to bring back companies that are down in 2022 .