Concert Golf recapitalizes White Manor CC

Concert Golf Partners added another private club to its portfolio, with the recapitalization of White Manor Country Club, a member-owned private club in the Philadelphia suburb of Malvern. The club's Board of Directors and its members approved a deal at the end of 2016, which will pay off all the club's debt. It is also expected to lower annual member dues by 10 to 15 percent, and inject more than $1 million into immediate capital projects at the club. The deal bars any future assessments on the membership.  White Manor Country Club opened in 1962 and was re-designed and renovated in 2003 by Bobby Weed, at a cost of more than $6 million. It borrowed the $6 million and began assessing the members to finance the golf course and clubhouse renovations in 2003. Dues and assessments were increased several times, but the debt remained.  Kevin McClelland, a White Manor board member, had been tasked with finding ways to fund various capital improvement projects since the highly successful 2003 course remodel, while dealing with the existing bank loan that funded the remodel.   "We contacted everyone we knew in the golf industry," McClelland added, "and after hearing glowing recommendations of how they have preserved and enhanced other high-end clubs like ours, we chose to partner with Concert Golf." Concert Golf CEO Peter Nanula said his team would immediately undertake more than $1 million in new capital projects, including greens renovations; new swimming pool amenities; outdoor dining; and a new fitness center.  "White Manor CC is a great club with a top-rated golf course and all the amenities, but it had some common capital challenges," Nanula said. "And these capital issues are now solved."  The Club also has six outdoor Har-Tru tennis courts, two recently added paddle tennis courts, a swimming pool, fitness center, and a 40,000-square foot clubhouse with full catering facilities.   Concert Golf Partners, a boutique owner-operator of private clubs based in Newport Beach, Calif., has recently acquired 14 clubs, including longtime member-owned clubs such as Blue Hill Country Club in Boston, Crestview Country Club in Wichita, and MacGregor Downs Country Club in Raleigh, N.C.   Concert Golf has $150 million in equity capital to invest and upgrade large-scale private clubs located in major metro areas.  "Once the Board realized that its existing bank debt service payments were constraining their ability to fund future capital projects and their annual member dues and charges were too high, the leadership wisely decided to find a partner with capital and club-operating experience," Nanula said. ''Once that decision was made, they ran a tight process and did an excellent job educating their membership. The Board vote was unanimous and the member vote ratifying the deal was overwhelmingly in favor."    

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