KirkwoodGolf: 29% of non-golfing women want to play golf

Saturday, December 03, 2016

29% of non-golfing women want to play golf

Carin Koch and Jeff Cox

A major global survey has found that nearly one in three women who don’t play golf are interested in taking up the game.

If golf clubs could tap into this huge market they would add a staggering £28 billion to the global golf economy.

Currently women account for just 24 per cent of golfers worldwide.

In the UK and Ireland, just 16 per cent of golfers – 162,000 people – are female, but the report found that there are 3.79 million prospective female golfers. Their latent demand value would be worth £2.85 billion to the UK and Irish golf economy.

Only France (4.45 million), South Korea (5.66 million) and the USA (17.38 million) had more prospective female golfers.

The report, The Global Economic Value of Increased Female Participation in Golf, commissioned by Syngenta and conducted by an independent international market research company, surveyed 14,000 people in eight markets in North America, Europe and Asia.

It found that 29 per cent of non-golfing females and lapsed players were either interested or very interested in taking up golf in the next two years.

Being outdoors, relaxation and spending time with family and friends are the primary appeal factors to non-golfers.

Affordable golf and free coaching, the report finds, are two of the most effective ways to recruit and retain female golfers.
It also found that women are 38 per cent more likely than men to bring children to golf, indicating that increasing female participation would significantly boost the number of juniors taking up the game.

Launching the report at the HSBC Golf Business Forum, Syngenta Global Head of Lawn & Garden Jeff Cox said: “For the first time, we have been able to assess worldwide latent demand for golf among women and estimate the potential economic value to the global golf industry.

“As our survey shows, millions of women worldwide could be interested in taking up golf within the next two years. This is a huge opportunity for the golf industry. However, realising this opportunity, engaging and then converting prospects, requires golf to listen to and address the specific needs of its different customers.”

Carin Koch, the 2015 European Solheim Cup captain and Syngenta Golf ambassador said: “As a professional golfer who has been fortunate to travel around the world, I know that golf is a game with global appeal to both men and women. I also know, as a mother of two children, that golf is a wonderful way to share time with family.

“One of the most interesting findings for me was that family responsibilities and cost were the two main reasons women give up golf, yet spending time with family and friends is one of the great attractions of golf. If golf could make itself more female and family friendly, there is both an immediate and long-term opportunity to retain and attract many more female golfers and bring their children into the game.”

Jeff Cox added: “This report is designed to help the global golf industry understand its customers and build its value

“Gender diversity is good for sport – and it is good for business. It is also something that a modern, globalized society expects.”

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