The Long Road
Well, this has been quite a journey.
At the PGA EuroPro Great National Hotels Irish Masters this week, it hit me just how long the road has been.
It was back in May 2015 when I first unveiled my new business idea to a few trusted mates back in Australia.
The reaction? I’d say a mix between surprise and mild concern.
A new brand selling golf balls online? Are you mad?
A normal person would have taken the advice, shelved the idea, and moved on to a well paid role in the industry.
Me? I chose the path less traveled.
Why? No lightbulb nor eureka moment.
Just a slow dawning that a new way of doing business would work for golf. And I was not going to be swayed.
If you follow business at all, you would have seen the amazing transformation of retail markets, across all industries. eBay, Amazon and the web in general have had a profound effect on how we all buy products in the modern world. Advancing phone technology has helped that too.
Golf, with all it’s traditions and conventions has been a slow beast to move. The industry operates, more or less, as it has for the last 40 or 50 years.
A handful of large, multi-national companies control an even smaller number of brands who dominate the market while churning out similar products using the same business model.
It’s a fairly simple formula when you see it in action.
1. Develop product.
2. Secure Tour Player endorsement
3. Market heavily to trade & consumers as ‘best product ever’ and/or ‘as used by….’
Look, I’m not knocking it. As a business model it did (and still does up to a point) work.
I just thought there was a better way.
USGA and R&A equipment regulations mean the playing field has been levelled.
Those large jumps in performance gains we were used to seeing 5 or 10 years ago really aren’t there anymore.
Product design is now more evolution than revolution.
That, and the consumer acceptance of e-commerce, allows small companies like Seed a chance to compete.
Take our new SD-01 golf ball.
Official ball of the PGA EuroPro Tour. Glowing product reviews from testers. Comparative performance on a swing robot.
And only half the price.
That sort of progress, even to me, was unthinkable back in 2015.
Yet here we are.
Close to launch and building steam.
So to all those who have helped along the way (and there have been many), thanks.
To all those interested in what we’re doing, stay tuned.
We’re just getting started…