The Pellucid Perspective - November 2010 - (Page 18)

THE LAST WORD Heard it through the grapevine here comes a time in every columnist’s life when there just isn’t one central compelling theme worthy of the required word count. Actually, that time comes quite often, but sometimes it’s easier to disguise it. This month is not one of those easily-disguised times, so I thought I’d share some of the information, rumors and other not-for-attribution innuendo I tend to gather in conversations with old and new friends in the industry. The names have been totally omitted to protect the gabby, in the certainty that I will need to mine those sources again in the future. One rumor that’s been floated around in idle industry conversation for a few months is that ClubCorp, presumably through its ownership entity of KSL Capital Partners, is planning (hoping, aspiring?) to purchase Troon Golf. One industry newsletter, which is fond of couching its verbiage in phrases like “word on the street is,” “look for,” and even the telling “rumor has it,” actually stated in print that ClubCorp was rumored to have covetous eyes on Troon, supposedly for its cash flow. Asked directly if there were any basis for such speculation, Troon CEO Hud Hinton said, “Absolutely not. I don’t know how that rumor started. There’s no truth to it.” Actually, the blurb in the newsletter in question also stated that ClubCorp is owned by the KKR investment firm, which will be news to KSL Capital, who does own the Dallas-based club ownership giant. KKR has not controlled KSL for a number of years. The same blurb speculated that Troon and principal investor Goldman Sachs would want to take properties off Goldman Sachs’ books (?) due to the fact that Goldman Sachs had received a bunch of government bailout money. Say what??? For one thing, Goldman Sachs has quite publicly paid that bailout money back to we taxpayers. For another, Troon’s portfolio of managed courses is almost entirely that – managed courses, not owned courses, so they’re not “on Goldman Sachs’ books.” Other than T those nitpicks, great rumor. Now that I have trashed someone else for spreading unsubstantiated multicourse owner/operator rumors, I can’t resist disseminating “word on the street,” albeit informed streets, that two very large multi-course operators are looking at substantial long-term debt coming due in the next 6-9 months. Re-financing is obviously no easy task in the current economic climate, so it will be interesting to see how they manage that debt. only 10 percent or less in the past year should count themselves fortunate. And, for the record, Troon’s Hinton agreed with that assessment for the industry in general, although not necessarily for the Troon portfolio. Feelin’ groovy What value EBITDA? Most industry folks, or at least most golf course operators, understand EBIDTA. For those who don’t, that stands for Earnings Before Interest, Depreciation, Taxes and Amortization. Actually, scrap that – almost nobody really understands EBITDA, because like cap rates for golf course buy-sell transactions, there are virtually no limitations on what can be factored into its computation. In any case, IRI Golf Group CEO Jeff Silverstein says that the way lenders This issue’s pages include Feel Golf CEO Dr. Lee Miller’s defiance of the USGA-R&A advisory on wedge grooves. Conversations with a couple of folks at other club manufacturers reveal that they are frustrated to varying degrees by those bodies’ dictates regarding cessation of the older grooves’ manufacture by the end of this year. One major manufacturer representative told yours truly that a recent communication to manufacturers from the USGA expressed more than a tinge of regret about the ruling and its scope. Unfortunately for those manufacturers who have already spent substantial sums in retooling to produce the newly blessed groove specifications, that’s just a bit late. And, by the way, what the hell was The Touring professionals could spin a TopFlite out of 4-inch rough with a kitchen spatula, obviously. The rest of us, not so much. And you, Mr. Retailer, your customers are…the rest of us. and appraisers value a golf course facility’s EBITDA has changed dramatically in recent years. Silverstein said that as recently as three to five years ago, courses were frequently being appraised at 10 times their EBITDA. Now, he says, most of those generating the appraisals are banks, not “golf guys,” and courses are now being appraised at five to six times EBITDA instead of a 10 multiple. Some would say that it is making golf course sale prices a little more reasonably based in the current economy. Exacerbating that situation, as a sidebar observation, Silverstein said that in his opinion, the number of owners who can say that their facilities’ EBITDA dropped the point in the first place? On the PGA Tour, the first place the older grooves were banned, 59 all but became the new 69 in Tour events this year. The Touring professionals could spin a TopFlite out of 4-inch rough with a kitchen spatula, obviously. The rest of us, not so much. And you, Mr. Retailer, your customers are…the rest of us. Par is safe from us, but your bottom line isn’t safe from our absence when we get frustrated because the game is just too damned hard without our gouge grooves. OK, there are other reasons it’s hard for most of us, but if you folks in Far Hills and St. Andrews have to “protect par,” do it with the boys and girls who are actually a threat to it. —Jim Dunlap November 2010 18 The Pellucid PersPecTive

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of The Pellucid Perspective - November 2010

The Pellucid Perspective - November 2010
Contents
Examining the Third Party Tee Time Marketing Issue
A Primer on Third Party Tee Time Marketers
Some Cities Willing to Buck Declining Golf Trend
Feel Golf Head Defies New Wedge Rules
Washington DC/Northern VA Profile
Oct YtD Weather Impact Sep YtD Utilization
Mixed Financial Results for Q3 and September YtD
Heard it Through the Grapevine

The Pellucid Perspective - November 2010

https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_202101
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_202012
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_202011
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_202010
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_202009
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_202008
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_202007
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_202006
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_202005
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_202004
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_202003
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_202002
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_202001
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201912
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201911
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201910
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201909
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201908
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201907
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201906
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201905
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201904
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201903
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201902
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201901
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201812
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201811
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201810
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201809
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201808
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201807
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201806
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201805
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201804
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201803
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201802
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201801
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201712
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201711
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201710
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201709
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201708
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201707
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201706
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201705
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201704
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201703
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201702
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201701
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201612
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201611
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201610
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201609
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201608
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201607
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201606
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201605
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201604
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201603
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201602
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201601
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201512
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201511
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201510
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201509
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201508
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201507
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201506
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201505
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201504
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201503
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201502
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201501
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201412
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201411
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201410
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201409
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201408
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201407
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201406
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201405
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201404
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201403
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201402
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201401
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201312
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201311
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201310
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201309
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201308
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201307
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201306
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201305
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201304
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201303
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201302
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201301
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201212
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201211
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201210
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201209
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201208
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201207
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201206
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201205
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201204
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201203
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201202
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201201
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201112
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201111
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201110
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201109
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201108
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201107
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201106
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201105
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201104
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201103
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201102
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201101
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201012
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201011
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201010
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pellucid/perspective_201008
https://www.nxtbookmedia.com