Attendance included more than 7,500 PGA Professionals among nearly 40,000 golf industry professionals. The more than 1,000 exhibiting golf companies and brands included more than 200 companies that were new to this year’s show. Show highlights included awards in the first Global Golf Innovation Competition and for the Best New Product, Inventor’s Spotlight, and Buyers Choice categories.
The 66th PGA Merchandise Show came to a close on January 25, in Orlando, Fla., after nearly 40,000 golf industry professionals from all 50 U.S. states and 89 countries attended the show, according to the event organizers. The attendance included more than 7,500 PGA Professionals.
The 2019 edition of the show displayed the newest products, trends and technology from more than 1,000 exhibiting golf companies and brands, including more than 200 companies new to the PGA Show.
The top five countries outside of the U.S. represented in attendance were Canada, United Kingdom, Korea, Japan and China. The top five U.S. states represented in attendance were Florida, California, New York, Georgia and North Carolina.
PGA Show Week began with the announcement by the National Golf Course Owners Association, the PGA of America and PGA Golf Exhibitions of a multi-year, strategic alliance to co-locate the annual Golf Business Conference with the PGA Merchandise Show in Orlando, beginning in 2020.
The global golf gathering began January 22, at the PGA Show Demo Day at Orange County National Golf Center. The newest products were tested within 200 hitting bays, multiple putting greens, a golf cart track and the vendor village at the 42-acre practice facility.
The first Global Golf Innovation Competition, a new “Shark Tank”-style competition for golf startups, showcased 10 innovators in golf to a full audience and a panel of judges January 22 at the Orange County Convention Center. Spain’s Fabio Peral and his startup company Golf Boo, an online travel platform, was named the winner of the inaugural competition. Runners-up included:
– CaddieNow (Second Place) – a service that connect golfers with caddies
– Kinexit (Third Place) – a training system to promote better golf
While at the show, PGA Professionals and top golf buyers voted for the three best new products among the merchandise displayed in the PGA Show New Product Zone. The 2019 New Product Zone winning products were:
– Kaeli Smith – women’s apparel
– VESSEL – golf bags
– Acu-Strike Golf – golf impact mats marking club path in the impact zone
Organized in partnership with the United Inventors Association (UIA), the Inventor’s Spotlight pavilion showcased golf inventions not yet available at retail. The 2019 Inventor’s Spotlight winning products were:
The Media Stick (Best Marketing Effort) – handles all media devices
Fourball (Most Innovative Concept) – a mobile app designed to help golfers meet other golfers
Guided Knowledge (The Pinnacle Award – Best in Show) – digital coaching tools to provide a new view of a player’s unique swing signature
In addition, two exhibitors new to the PGA Show were voted as recipients of the Top Buyers Choice Awards. The 2019 winners were:
SIC Cups (Seriously Ice Cold) – double-wall, vacuum-insulated, stainless-steel drinkware with a lifetime warranty
Oliver Thomas – bags for everyday carry with modern function
C&RB’s highlights of the PGA Show will be included in its March 2019 issue, along with a report from the Golf Industry Show, which will take place February 5-8 in San Diego, Calif.
The 2020 U.S. PGA Merchandise Show is scheduled for January 21-24 in Orlando, Fla.