PGA Tour outlines $930 million equity granting to 193 players after Strategic Sports Group investment
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PGA Tour outlines $930 million equity granting to 193 players after Strategic Sports Group investment

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The PGA Tour is offering a unique opportunity to its players to own a piece of the golf league and its commercial interests through an equity grant program that will transfer $930 million in equity stake to 193 players past and present.

As part of the Strategic Sports Group investment in the newly formed PGA Tour for-profit subsidiary known as PGA Tour Enterprises, the Tour is using a sizable portion of the initial $1.5 billion investment to seed equity grants for players who meet certain criteria. The PGA Tour outlined four groups of players, 193 in total, that will receive equity grants in a first round of the program.

In this memo to players, the four groups are:

  • Group 1 will receive a combined $750 million in equity and consists of 36 players based on career performance, last five-years performance and Player Impact Program results
  • Group 2 will receive a combined $75 million in equity and consists of 64 players based on the last three-years performance
  • Group 3 will receive a combined $30 million in equity and consists of 57 players that have earned certain fully-exempt PGA Tour status categories
  • Group 4 will receive a combined $75 million in equity and consists of 36 players who were "instrumental to building the modern PGA Tour, based on career performance"

The PGA Tour did not detail yet which players are in which groups. It's unclear how many past or inactive players will receive equity grants, if any.

All eligible players can receive only one grant, and they only qualify in one of the four categories listed. These grants will vest over time, and vesting is commensurate on minimum PGA Tour participation (i.e., playing 15 FedEx Cup events per year) or service requirements each year. The requirements depend on the size of the equity grant.

The value of the equity can increase over time, as any equity share can in a company. Strategic Sports Group made its investment commitment at a valuation of $12 billion. Since PGA Tour Enterprises is not a publicly traded company, future valuations will be determined based on future investors and what they're will to pay for equity stakes in the organization.

More equity could be doled out over time as a result of the Strategic Sports Group investment or other investors that could become partners in PGA Tour Enterprises.

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Ryan Ballengee

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