Golf tour­na­ment or­ga­nizer aims for sec­ond-tier cities

China Daily (Canada) - - NEWS CAPSULE -

The PGA Tour, a US or­ga­nizer of top pro­fes­sional golf tour­na­ments, is plan­ning to ex­pand its pres­ence to sec­ond-tier Chi­nese cities, de­spite a do­mes­tic aus­ter­ity cam­paign that has cooled en­thu­si­asm for the sport.

It plans to move into cities in Jiangsu, Shan­dong, Yun­nan, Hainan and Fu­jian prov­inces, ac­cord­ing to Gre­gory Gil­li­gan, Greater China man­ag­ing di­rec­tor of PGA Tour Inc.

“China is in the early stages of de­vel­op­ing golf. We have started to see some mo­men­tum in the coun­try, and we are bullish about long-term growth,” he said.

Gil­li­gan said the Chi­nese anti­graft cam­paign has slowed the golf mar­ket, but op­ti­mism has been voiced re­cently for cor­po­rate spon­sor­ships for PGA Tour events.

Last year, be­tween 1 mil­lion and 1.1 mil­lion peo­ple played golf in China, and there were 390,000 “core golfers”, de­fined as those play­ing the game at least eight times a year.

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