Iconic golf brands Titleist and Footjoy have been sold to the Koreans but for all the dedicated Pro V1 golf ball users out there don’t panic, by all reports it will be business as usual for consumers.
It has been announced in the US that Fortune Brands has agreed to sell the Acushnet Company, makers of Titleist, Footjoy and Pinnacle golf products, to a partnership that includes sports clothing giant Fila Korea.
It has been known for some time that Fortune was planning to separate its three main businesses and a deal has been announced to unload Acushnet for a reported $US1.225 billion in cash to a consortium including Fila and Korean private equity giant Mirae Asset Private Equity.
Titleist’s Pro V1 golf balls are touted as the most successful ball of all time, selling more than 900 million balls in the past decade.
Fila believe they can flog even more Titleist products in Asia.
Gene Yoon, Chairman and CEO of Fila Korea, said, “With our extensive knowledge and reach in Asia, we believe that the Acushnet brands have incredible new opportunities for growth in the emerging markets in Asia.”
The good news is that industry commentators say there should be no adverse affect for golfers (47 percent of the Acushnet Company’s 2010 sales were outside the U.S).
The Acushnet Company will operate as a standalone entity and the worldwide headquarters will remain in the US.
Sources close to the proceedings say it will be “business as usual” with critical barometers such as product development, product offerings, availability and pricing largely unaffected in the short term.