Will development rebound anytime soon?

If comments made recently by some of golf’s leading players are any indication, we are in for a slow rebound — even outside of the United States.


“I don't see what we're going through as being a serious problem in the big-picture scheme of things. I think it's just one of the cycles we're in. We're going to have these downturns, and we're going to have these problem places, but we're going to work through it because of the oversupply. Okay, let's assume that not many new courses are going to be designed in the near future, so golf course architects . . . won't have as many golf courses to design. Well, so what? That's just the way it is.

— Tom Fazio in an April interview posted at GolfTheMidAtlantic.com


“Will we ever get back to the halcyon days? It’s difficult to say. But the era of unlimited budgets for golf developments, as we experienced in the 1980s and 1990s, are gone. I’ve told people in countries such as China that we don’t want to repeat the mistakes of the past, because that has a lot to do with the situation we are in now.”

— Greg Norman at the recent KPMG Golf Business Forum in Turkey


“It is our opinion that it will take some time for the golf industry to recover. Many developments have stopped, been delayed or even cancelled due to the global economic crisis and this is being driven by a lack of confidence, liquidity in the market and a change in consumer demand.”

— Andrea Sartori, head of KPMG’s Golf Advisory Practice in EMA


“It has been a tough couple of years for real estate finance, in particular. There has been a massive shockwave where lenders were unable to fund new projects and the equity markets have collapsed. Golf, in particular, has been hit badly and it may take longer than most industries to return to where it was.”

— Giovanni Gregoratti, director of European real estate investment banking at Citigroup


“My life has moved on since my playing days, both from a business and personal perspective and I now enjoy golf in a different way, which is equally rewarding and still allows me to give something positive back to the game.”

— Annika Sorenstam at the KPMG forum


“[The ASGCA] plan[s] to work during this year to uncover new data that supports what we’ve observed around the world: golf courses benefit communities as revenue and tax sources, green space, wildlife and plant sanctuaries and water filtration, among other uses. There is an inherent goodness to the community that comes from the positive environmental, financial and social impact of a golf course.”

— Erik Larsen on assuming the presidency of the ASGCA


“On the operational side at resort golf destinations, people stopped travelling and the corporate market collapsed. On whatever metric you use, the US is way off where it should be, but it would be unfair to say every aspect of golf is down.”

— Steve Mona, CEO, World Golf Foundation


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