Golf Canada held its AGM over the weekend in Montreal, and released its annual report at the same time. Always interesting reading, there are some items worth noting both on the positive and negative sides:
Two years ago, GC ED Scott Simmons stressed how important the new membership drive was, especially since he’d asked the board to allocate millions in support of it. Since then the organization has gone through a couple of executives who were supposed to lead the initiative and ended up flat overall. It didn’t add to its membership base, but did keep fewer members from leaving and identified clubs that were perhaps fudging their numbers and not paying their share.
Here was Simmons’ remarks when the program was launched:
“If we aren’t successful with this, I don’t see any other initiatives that we can do to raise revenue to support our programs.”
During 2011, Golf Canada continued to focus on membership revitalization and growth as our key goal and
our number one priority. The membership initiative was implemented during the 2010 golf season and we have seen success with a slight increase in member clubs and public player membership. Our total spending in this area will be reduced, but the organization will continue to focus on delivering superior value to its current members and will increase membership levels by promoting the benefits of membership
During 2011, the Board approved a motion to eliminate the Membership Fund, which was allocated a total amount of $5 million in 2009, and realize spending in this area as part of normal operations. The plan to build a sustainable membership base through member club retention and recruitment and
growing the number of public golfer members has not changed, but the focus has been shifted based on marketplace learnings from the past two years.
The golfcanada.ca site also houses our Handicap Network and to the critics that say golfers don’t care about maintaining an official handicap, I respectfully disagree. The proof is in the numbers – in 2011, more than 340,000 golfers posted over 8 million scores. Those golfers that tracked their handicap joined thousands more Canadian golf enthusiasts in helping to make golf- canada.ca Canada’s most viewed source for golf news.
We are also committed to growing the Golf in Schools program, which introduces golf through the elementary school physical education curriculum. Our efforts in 2012 will be bolstered thanks to the support of Callaway Golf who has come on board as presenting sponsor.
It’s about exposure – getting clubs into the hands of children and providing a basic introduction to the sport. In less than three years, the program is in more than 1,300 schools. Our goal is to get golf into the majority
of the 10,000 Canadian elementary schools. With a world-class curriculum and the full endorsement of Physical Education Canada, Golf in Schools is helping to introduce thousands of children to the game. In 2012, we also plan to roll out a high school program so that thousands more young adults can maintain a connection to the sport.
The 2011 RBC Canadian Open was held at Shaughnessy Golf and Country Club in Vancouver. While the event operated at a small deficit, the presentation on site, the corporate support and the support of the host club all contributed to making the event an overall success. As a result of focused efforts by Golf Canada and its key partner, RBC, we were able to collectively contribute $1.14 million to charities in 2011.
For many years Golf Canada was able to rely on net revenues of approximately $2.0 million annually from the Canadian Open. However, since 2007, the changes in our agreement with the PGA TOUR and related changes to the value of TV coverage has made it difficult for the event to provide the same levels of financial support to the organization, but we expect the event will operate at a breakeven level for the foreseeable future. We strongly believe that the Canadian Open is an important event for Canadian golf fans and we are prepared to continue to operate it on this basis.
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This is why they need an average golfer with perspective. Rather than hiring an agency to re-develop the logo they should have hired someone to investigate what golfers really want. It’s a great example of tunnel vision
So with a Golf Canada Membership, I’d receive: Savings on Insurance. Travel Advantages. Discounts on Merchandise.
Cool, sign me up!
Seriously, someone point me in the right direction where to join. Their website does not provide a link to join, nor does it mention the cost of membership. No wonder they are giving up on this initiative…
I would say the average golfer wants a fun, affordable place to play. One that could be walked, which is better for their health, and his or her game. A decent place to practice, not hitting off of a rubber mat. The developer, on the other hand, wants a 7000+ yard monster surrounded by a subdivision to satisfy their ego, and a delusion that their ‘masterpiece’ will one day host The Canadian Open. How many people play from the tips? I’d say less than 5% (of men), and out of that 5%, how many actually pay green fees? Are the men and women (and juniors), playing from the blues, whites and reds subsidizing those playing from the blacks? Yes. Does it cost substantially more in land, construction and maintenance costs for these monster courses? Of course it does. And Joe Average is the one paying for it. I would rather most courses max out around 6600 yards instead of 7000+. If the developer wants to keep the large budget and higher green fees, then build multiple tee boxes on each hole, at different angles and yardages. This gives the player a variety each time he/she visits, and not the same course, day in and day out. That is my average golfer’s perspective.
The only reason I use the RCGA errrr Golf Canada handicap site is that my club requires me to if I want to play in the tournaments. If not for that I would keep a handicap but I would use any one of the programs or sites available that do a much better job of it. Heck I bet most of the Green fee players that bother with a handicap use it as much for the stats that are available with these programs and which are for the most part missing from the RCGA site.
As for other Golf Canada benefits as previously mentioned it is the usual insurance, travel deals exclusive to Golf Canada and and anyone else who wants them. Heck even the bag tag you get is a flippin’ joke, I don’t think more than a half dozen people at my club bothered to pick theirs up. More wasted dollars.