The European Tour and PGA TOUR have announced a new strategic alliance bringing the two biggest forces in world golf together with a common purpose.

The landmark agreement will see golf’s two major Tours explore all facets of collaboration, working together on strategic commercial opportunities including collaborating on global media rights in certain territories.

Part of the agreement will include the PGA Tour taking a minority investment stake in European Tour Productions, the European Tour’s Media Production company, which produces and distributes content internationally.

The Tours will also work in partnership on a number of other areas including global scheduling, prize funds and playing opportunities for the respective memberships. Further details of these areas will be announced in due course.

The closer alliance could be positive for the Dubai Duty-Free Irish Open which remains a major part of the European Tour and will hopefully return as part of the Rolex Series in 2021 but which has switched dates a couple of times in recent years and will potentially have to do so again next year with the Olympics being rescheduled as well as the Ryder Cup.

The partnership between the two tours on that competition gas created a bedrock of mutual comfort which suggests that the new arrangements will also be seamlessly introduced over the next twelve months.

The European Tour had been rumoured to be in discussion with a number of private equity investors but coming together with the larger US PGA Tour makes more sense from a cohesion perspective, and from a cultural one with both organisations run by as well as for the players.

“This partnership is an historic moment for the game of golf and is a fantastic opportunity for both the European Tour and the PGA TOUR to explore ways to come together at the very pinnacle of our sport and work in unison for the benefit of the men’s professional game,” said Keith Pelley, Chief Executive of the European Tour.

“Today’s announcement is the formalisation of a closer working relationship between the Tours in recent years. It was one which was crystalised earlier this year when both Jay Monahan (CEO of the PGA Tour) and I were part of the working group containing representatives of the four Majors and the LPGA, a group which helped shape the remainder of the golfing calendar for 2020 during unprecedented times.”

“We shared the challenges of working through a year neither of us could have ever imagined and we found definite synergies in many areas of our respective Tours. That gave us the impetus to move forward together and arrive at this momentous announcement we are making today.”

“We are thrilled to announce this further strengthening of our partnership with the European Tour, and we look forward to working together for the benefit of the men’s professional game and for golf fans around the world,” added Jay Monahan.

 

Sport for Business Partners