Centroid bids for golf equipment maker TaylorMade Seoul-based private equity firm shortlisted for sale of U.S. golf company

Translated by Ryu Ho-joung 공개 2021-04-12 08:20:15

이 기사는 2021년 04월 12일 08:17 더벨 유료페이지에 표출된 기사입니다.

Centroid Investment Partners is vying for TaylorMade, one of the largest golf equipment makers in the world, the latest sign of the growing interest of private equity in the golf industry.

The Seoul-based firm has advanced alongside rival bidders from the U.S. and China to the final round of bidding for the U.S. golf company owned by KPS Capital Partners, according to industry sources.

The shortlisted bidders started due diligence. The U.S. investment firm hired Morgan Stanley earlier this year to run an auction for the company. It is expected to receive final offers and select a preferred buyer as early as at the end of this month.

Founded in 1979, TaylorMade is one of the leading golf equipment makers alongside Acushnet and Callaway Golf. Its revenue shrank from $1.7 billion in 2012 to $900 million in 2017. That year, KPS Capital Partners bought the brand from Adidas for $425 million.

The company has seen a rapid rebound in financial performance for the past years thanks to increased investments in marketing and new offerings. The brand has struck partnerships with star players such as Tiger Woods, Dustin Johnson and Rory McIlroy.

The golf industry benefited from coronavirus lockdowns, which helped boost the popularity of the sport globally. According to research firm Golf Datatech, golf equipment sales in the U.S. rose 10.1% year-on-year to $2.8 billion in 2020, the highest in 15 years. Rounds played were also up 13.9% in the same period, the largest increase since the firm started collecting data in 1998.

The deal, if signed, is expected to be worth 1.5 trillion won ($1.33 billion) to 2 trillion won, which would be the largest transaction in the sector, outsizing the $1.2 billion takeover of Acushnet by a consortium of Fila Korea and Mirae Asset Private Equity in 2011. (Reporting by Se-hun Jo)
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