Callaway Golf Company President and CEO Chip Brewer called 2021 a “pivotal year” for his company, marked not only by the acquisition of Topgolf in the first quarter of the year, but also a complete transformation of how it does business and where it focuses, according to supplemental materials provided Thursday (Feb. 10) during a quarterly and annual earnings call.
In pointing to the past year’s “exceptional results, significant growth and strong momentum across all our business segments,” Brewer said in prepared remarks, “Over the past five years, we have combined a traditional golf equipment business with select lifestyle apparel brands, and the world’s leading tech-enabled golf entertainment company to deliver a truly differentiated business model. … our global sales and operations teams work tirelessly, delivering quarter after quarter of impressive results despite significant, global, COVID-related operating challenges… In addition, we have increasingly made key investments in infrastructure and people to support a larger business and to set us up for continued growth in financial success.”
Callaway’s fourth quarter results were “better than expected,” with Topgolf and “continued high demand” for golf equipment and lifestyle apparel and gear largely responsible for the 90% year-over-year jump in net revenue to $712 million.
Topgolf walk-in traffic and event sales exceeded Callaway’s expectations, said Brewer, led by an increase in corporate event bookings in the fourth quarter. The omicron variant caused a downturn in group bookings in December and January as well as short-term staffing challenges in that time.
Callaway’s U.K. locations have bounced back quickly from the omicron effect, said Brewer, so the same can be expected to happen across the U.S. for the remainder of the first quarter of 2022.
Callaway opened nine new locations in 2021, including a 72-bay operation in Fort Myers, Florida, in mid-November. The company expects to open at least 10 new locations in 2022 and possibly an 11th new location late in the year, Brewer said.
“I’ve had a ringside seat watching Topgolf open venues for nearly 10 years now, and in my opinion, we are uniquely good here,” he said. “As a result of increasing brand strength, the core competency of our real estate team and our operating team’s expertise, this is now a proven and repeatable model, a fact I believe the financial community may not fully appreciate yet.
In January, cloud-based workflow management software Golf Genius Software partnered with RepSpark Systems to debut a new level of B2B eCommerce wholesale for golf apparel and equipment.
Read more: Golf Genius, RepSpark Partner on Golf B2B Work
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