Crown Impact: Golf industry sees rupee loss of Rs 100

JAIPUR: The economic slowdown had already hit the golf industry last year with self-imposed restrictions on nonessential national/international travel, major corporate golf tournaments hosted by luxury automakers that were canceled, and sponsors remained strong in your professional golf expenses. the coronavirus The pandemic only made matters worse with the postponement of the iconic $ 1.75 million Hero Indian Open of the European Tour, scheduled for March 19-22 in Gurgaon, which launched the so-called financial catastrophe.

With many professional and amateur tournaments canceled/postponed to contain the highly contagious Covid-19, travel restrictions imposed by various countries, closed airlines, closed golf courses, golfers confined to their homes, experts have pointed out the possible loss of income in excess of 100 rupees crore.

“The blocking of Covid-19 has resulted in the daily loss of revenue for the 240 golf clubs across the country. Due to the loss of the green fee (for walk-in golfers), capitation fee (for organizing events), food and beverage (F&b),andequipmentfees,clubsdonothaveagreatsourceofincome.thepostponementoftheheroindianopenmeansalossofnotlessthanrs20-22crore,inadditiontothefoureventsinthepgtithatwerecanceledandanother5-6eventsthatcouldbepostponedinadditiontothecancellationoftheeventsigu:losscanbebetweenrs5-10crore.corporateeventshavealreadydeclinedsincelastyearwithmostofthembackedbyluxuryautomakersorrealestatedevelopers.idon'texpectthemtoreturnbeforeoctober-novembergolfindustryassociationdirector(gia)rishinaraintoldtoi.


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“Globally, there are more than 60 million golfers in the world. The largest number (50%) live in the United States. The UK, Scandinavia and Japan are the other mature golf markets with over 6 million golfers. IAGTO's best estimate of the value of golf vacations organized by its member operators now exceeds $ 2 billion per year. Europe-based operators are responsible for 74.8% of this sales revenue. In India, we have approximately 100,000 IGU registered golfers. Of this number, approximately 7,000 golfers travel on multiple golf vacations. The most popular destination is Thailand, as it is connected by more than 75 flights from multiple points in India. The segment leaving this business at approximately Rs 60 crore. Although the value is small, this is a very specific segment: individuals/families travel in business class, stay in 5-star hotels and spend generously on their golf vacation. The incoming segment was negligible, but it was poised for a sizable boost with established golf circuits that have sprung up in various parts of India. But due to the total blockade, the financial year 2020-21 is a complete cancellation. The direct loss is Rs 60 million and the indirect loss will be approximately Rs 200 million until March 2021, ”Bakhshi, who has four decades of experience in the tourism sector working for SOTC Travel and formerly Air, told TOI India.

Multiple winner of the Asian Tour Shiv Kapur , who shifted to Dubai last year, has been stranded in Dehradun with his wife Maya and three-year-old daughter Veda due to the coronavirus outbreak. Kapur insisted that these are challenging times for professionals as for them contesting for prize money is the only way to earn a living.

“Other than grocery stores and pharmacies, no one is making a living right now. Most companies are encouraging people to work from home, but the sport is such that you cannot work from home. It's cool to say stay home, stay safe, but we have to get back to work. Almost 90 percent of golfers in the world are waiting for things to open up to hit the fairways. It is very difficult to sit at home for six months to a year as a professional golfer and be able to pay bills, child fees, rents, mortgages and loans, etc. For them, playing is the only way to support their families. In fact, sports are more in an urgent situation to return to normal, Kapur told TOI.

Regular European tour Gaganjeet Bhullar He went one step further by saying that it will be more difficult for newly converted professionals to keep up in these hot times.

“People like me or Jyoti (Randhawa), Jeev (Milkha Singh) sir have earned enough money to feed themselves and their families for the rest of their lives. But imagine someone who has just turned professional or 2-3 years in the game. It is really difficult for him since his main ability to win is only golf. Also think about caddies in smaller clubs or cities, with no club-level tournament happening what they are going to do. Although the big clubs like it Delhi Golf Club , DLF Golf&Country Club, Jaypee Greens, etc. They are doing their part, not all clubs support them financially. The situation is getting terrifying every day, ”California-based Bhullar told TOI from Kapurthala.

Golf commentator and corporate golf organizer Brandon Desouza feels that golf has the ability to recover from the situation faster than any other sport due to the open space in which it is played.

Things get bad every day, but it's not just because of Corona. The automotive sector has faced a depression for the past two years. Most sponsors felt that they were not getting an adequate return on investment (ROI), so they tied up their portfolio chains. Yes, Corona has definitely made life hell for the entire golf fraternity. People used to take the teaching route to support themselves if they couldn't make money professionally, but that's also off limits now. People took corporate jobs through vocational training, but the offices are closed and many companies have decided to make salary cuts. Still, I'm optimistic that once the running of the bulls is over, golf will be the fastest sport to recover from. It is the only sport where social distancing is easy to practice. Holding tournaments on weekdays in the sun with small groups will help keep that going, ”Desouza told TOI.

Narain echoed Desouza's sentiments saying: A golf course generally spans 100 acres. Even a group of 100 people playing means a distance of one acre that separates the two. But they must be careful when placing the flag, not touching the cup while they lift the ball, disinfect the ball, the glove and the towels as many times as possible. Staying at a distance with his caddies, taking a shower before starting and after finishing his round.

PGTI CEO Uttam Singh Mundy said the professional body will try to accommodate the four postponed events in the second half of the season.

We plan to resume the season in September once things are back to normal. The only loss we incurred was the postponement of all four tournaments from March to May. We generally have a break from June to August, so we would accommodate those events in the second half of the season. My advice to all professionals will be to not lose hope and use this time to get physically and mentally fit by doing flexibility exercises and doing yoga, ”said Mundy of Chandigarh.

In addition to losing the accommodation of the Hero Indian Open due to the threat of the virus, the Indian Golf Union They had to postpone their long-awaited Annual General Meeting (AGM) to elect their office holders. The national government body now intends to hold the AGM immediately after the Indian government lifts the shutdown. They also canceled 30-35 tournaments including their main tour, the junior-sub-junior zonal zone and the boys and girls feeding tour.

“We will celebrate the AGM as soon as normality is restored, since it is very important for us to regain the recognition of the sports ministry. If domestic travel restrictions are lifted in late April, we could organize the AGM in May. But it all comes down to the situation, said IGU CEO, Major General (retired). Bibhuti Bhushan said.

Loss of income

Golf course: Rs 15-20 crore (green fees/capitation fees, F&B, IMFL service, equipment fees, instructor fees)

Canceled/postponed tournaments: Rs 20-30 crore - PGTI (4 events canceled until May), IGU (30-35 main tour, junior/sub-junior zone and power events), corporate events (Audi Quattro Cup, Mercedes Trophy, BMW International Cup , Volvo World Golf Challenge, World Corporate Golf Challenge, Turkish Airlines World Golf Cup, etc.)

Golf tourism: Rs 50-60 crore (both outbound and inbound, with travel restrictions to various nations over the next 4-5 months).