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The future of the golf industry in 2020

According to the latest HSBC offers, the golf industry is still undergoing a transition period motivated by economic and social changes that are housed in an increasingly interconnected and global world.

  • According to the consultant HSBC, there will be changes in trends that will shape the future of the golf industry in 2020:
  • Golf clubs will become more family friendly. There will be family areas instead of bars, rounds will be better suited for junior players and there will be certified “Women Friendly”
  • 6 and 9 hole formats golf courses as well as other adapted to reduced hours and shorter rounds will complement the traditional 18-holes golf course. A pay-TV sports channel will accelerate this tendency by promoting professional tournaments “adapted to the new mini format”.
  • The golf industry will benefit from its association with customer profiles and younger players. Golf will become fashionable, and will become a social and healthy trend.
  • The next “Tiger Woods” and most demanded profile by sports and media sponsors will be a young Asian player.
  • Asian golf brands begin to make inroads into the golf equipment and clothing market. 
  • Golf will become unisex. Women are growing familiar with this game, golf will become a way where men and women can share their leisure time, like cycling has done in richer markets.
  • Golf simulators with motion sensors and gestural interfaces will become a social sports trend.
  • Video games consumers will become golfers. Social environments and family-oriented games (video games) will encourage people to move into this sport, and not vice versa.
  • Applications as “caddy”: Smartphone and tablet software will help golfers make the right choices, while sensors in equipment and golf courses (smart coach) will help players learn from their mistakes.
  • Golf will become a centre of expertise in water management, conservation and biodiversity.
  • The first golf courses “carbon positive” will open with great interest to generate publicity.
  • Authorities will change the rules on materials and golf equipment to reduce the distances achieved by professional players taking the lengths of golf courses under control. 

The investment seeks to Asia.

The big brands are looking for new markets in which to develop, and Asia continues to be the diamond where to settle their expansion plans. We have clear examples such as Volvo or Nike which is associated with media figures such as the basketball player Yao Ming, to awaken interest in the Chinese golf. Or the European Circuit itself, which has deepened in Middle Eastern lands.

Research done by The Futures Company in 2007 found that Chinese parents identified golf as powerful tool for teaching children in decision-making. Taking into account that, for the Chinese culture, if the sport does not produce benefits, it is not relevant to its citizens, remarkable is the progression that is detected in the big Asian continent. A vision shared by British and American parents, who noted that it is also good at teaching self-confidence.

Tourism is geared toward new directions.

Tourism booming Asian golf is based on a significant increase in golf operators and companies related to the industry. According to Peter Walton, head of IAGTO, more than 120 companies have joined the International Association of Golf Tour Operators, a 15% above previous years.

Vietnam and Cuba reactivate the construction of large golf resorts. The latter with a budget of $1.5 trillion and 16 courses in the whole island. Taking into account that this industry generates between 20% and 30% more spending on destination, this new tendency may be the breeding ground for a new way to analyze the new vision of the golf industry that is upon us.

If this is the future that is looming in this industry, we must remember the wise man Charles Darwin in his great work “The evolution of the species.”


“It is not the strongest that survive, but the one most responsive to change”.