New York, United States: EP Golf Ventures, a strategic investment partnership between Elysian Park Ventures and the PGA of America designed to support innovation in the golf industry, has announced the completion of the first closing of its first investment fund, EP Golf Ventures Fund I.
EP Golf Ventures invests in areas that add strategic value across the US$102 billion golf industry, supporting organisations that seek to improve coaching, education and training; health, wellness and performance science; hospitality and facility management; retail; and agriculture.
Selected investors in EP Golf Ventures Fund I include Topgolf Callaway Brands, the tech-enabled modern golf and active lifestyle company with a portfolio of global brands including Topgolf, Callaway Golf, TravisMathew, Toptracer, Odyssey, OGIO, Jack Wolfskin, and World Golf Tour (WGT); Gametime Capital, the family office of Richard Fairbank; and several other institutions, individuals and investors across the sports, technology and media eco-system.
Both Elysian Park Ventures and the PGA of America have directly committed capital to the Fund. EP Golf Ventures expects to complete a second close of the Fund later this year.
“EP Golf Ventures has a strong investment thesis that is strategically aligned with our mission to drive innovation, new personality, trends and attitudes in golf,” said Chip Brewer, President & Chief Executive Officer of Topgolf Callaway Brands.
“Elysian Park’s institutional knowledge and network combined with the PGA of America’s golf industry expertise offers an unparalleled platform to identify promising entrepreneurs and organisations that will capture the market opportunity in this rapidly changing and growing sport, and usher in the next generation for the game we all love.”
EP Golf Ventures has already made four investments in technologies that are poised to change the golf industry – Sportsbox AI, an AI-powered technology company that develops coaching applications through markerless 3D motion capture; Dryvebox, an organisation working to increase golf access to all through a mobile golf simulator that offers lessons, practice sessions, virtual golf and private events; Sensible Weather, a climate technology company helping consumers understand climate and de-risk adventures against the weather; and Repurpose, a plant-based compostable tableware company.
EP Golf Ventures expects to build a portfolio of approximately 15 companies over time.
“The PGA of America is committed to growing the game and advancing the industry through the PGA Professional,” said Arjun Chowdri, Chief Innovation Officer at the PGA of America, an Executive Member of the Asian Golf Industry Federation.
“With the backing of our new partners, along with our continued partnership with Elysian Park Ventures, we look forward to supporting businesses that have the vision to drive innovation in the golf industry and create opportunities for the PGA Professional,” added Chowdri.
Jay Adya, Managing Partner of Elysian Park Ventures, said: “Golf is one of the world’s fastest growing sports, and there is an enormous opportunity to drive innovation across all facets of the game.
“We started EP Golf Ventures with the PGA of America to partner with standout entrepreneurs that have the ability to create real change within the golf industry and beyond. Completing this first close further validates our approach, and we look forward to growing our portfolio with support from our new investors and partners.”