We imagine many M&A pros watched as Patrick Reed won the Masters Tournament, fending off fourth-round challenges from Rickie Fowler and Jordan Spieth. It's the first major title for Reed, who scores the coveted green jacket from the Augusta National Golf Club. Meanwhile Tiger Woods played well enough to move into the top 100 in the world for the first time in three years. The golf course offers a great venue for dealmakers to get to know each other in a relaxed setting. And the sport has spawned its own share of deals in the middle market. For example, Gannett Co. Inc. (NYSE: GCI), the publisher of USA Today, purchased golf magazine Golfweek . The deal came less than a month after the death of legendary golfer Arnold Palmer, who helped popularize the sport during the 1960s. Callaway Golf, TaylorMade and other players have been involved in recent transactions.
Almost every golfer should recognize the Callaway Golf club brand. In 2017, Callaway bought sports apparel comapny TravisMathew for nearly $126 million.
TaylorMade, endorsed by Rory Mcllroy, makes popular bags, putters and drivers. In 2017, KPS Capital acquired the company from Adidas for $425 million.
Apollo Global Management LLC (NYSE: APO) paid about $1.1 billion for country-club operator ClubCorp Holdings in 2017. The target's properties include California’s Mission Hills and the Woodlands in Texas.
In 2018, golf course operator Arcis Golf purchased the Oaks Club at Valenica, formerly known as TPC Valencia. The course was designed in consultation with Mark O'Meara, who won 14 international titles.
Gannett Co. Inc. (NYSE: GCI), the publisher of USA Today, acquired golf publication Golfweek in 2016. The deal came less than a month after the death of legendary golfer Arnold Palmer, who helped popularize the sport during the 1960s. In addition to editorial content, Golfweek produces events for the PGA Tour, LPGA and the United States Golf Association.