In the Fashion District of New York City on Tuesday, TaylorMade-Adidas Golf made its case on how it will grow its apparel and footwear business to nearly double its current size by 2015.
At an unveiling of its 2012 line, executive vice president of TaylorMade Golf John Kawaja said he hopes to grow the apparel and footwear side from around $400 million in global business in 2010 to $700 million in four years.
The four-part plan to get there includes a focus on the burgeoning Asian market. Specifically in Japan, Kawaja said their business there is nearly as large as the United States. The company feels there is room to expand in the U.S., as well as in Europe, which the company has termed its “legacy” markets. The hope is to move to some 5,000 stores in the next four years – up from the 3,500 or so now.
The company looks also to take advantage of its placement in the Adidas group, including sales positioning at the retail outlets the group owns globally.
“An opportunity to represent golf right next to soccer, right next to baseball, right next to running. That’s a tremendous opportunity for us,” Kawaja said.
CEO Mark King is equally as bullish about the entire company, citing figures that had TaylorMade holding nearly half of the market share of woods sold in February. Since then, King cited a market share of about 42 percent, but that remained a 10 percent hike over the prior year’s piece of the pie.
“This has been a dream year for our company on the TaylorMade side,” King said.
King feels that the uncertainty about the game has been replaced by infectious stories of developing, youthful talent – much of which is on their staff.
“Everyone was really wondering what would happen to golf a few years ago when Tiger was having his problems. Viewership was down, interest in the game was down. But if you look at what happened on the Tour with these young superstars emerging, a more inspiring story may have developed,” he said.
“All of these competitive young players have brought a real energy and a spirit to the game we haven’t seen in a long time because it’s been dominated by Tiger and the other older players.”
The stories, King says, have driven amateur players – or interested newbies – to play the game with modern equipment.
“The technology, whether it’s in equipment, the golf ball, footwear or apparel … has done a lot to inspire people to play golf again and to, hopefully, find the joy that drew all of us into the game when we got into it.”