TGI business conference and awards ‘the perfect kickstart to the season’

Alistair Dunsmuir
By Alistair Dunsmuir February 15, 2024 18:48

TGI Golf partners, assistants and partner suppliers descended upon four-time Ryder Cup venue The Belfry for the group’s annual business conference and awards ceremony.

PGA professionals from across the UK and Ireland attended the two-day event where they take part in educational seminars to enhance their knowledge as well as visit a brand showcase.

In the absence of a trade show, the brand showcase is the only opportunity partners have to see all all of TGI Golf’s partner suppliers in one place to discuss the products and services on offer.

The two-days of educational seminars gave partners the chance to enhance their knowledge in a whole host of subjects from experts including Dave Shillingford and Matt Callandine from RightMarket, provider of TGI’s MyMarketing HUB which has recently seen a substantial upgrade.

Other speakers included TGI director of communications Matt Millard who spoke about email marketing, Gavin Dear from Shot Scope as well as TGI’s four retail Consultants – Chris Taylor, Simon Keeling, Peter Smyth and Ricky Gray.

Darren Arber, head professional at Halifax West End Golf Club, said: “It’s always good to come along to the conference, mixing with fellow TGI partners sharing ideas, going along to the seminars to expand our knowledge and learning how we can improve our businesses.

“The ShotScope seminar was really useful, explaining how we can use ShotScope to enhance lessons and make tuition more profitable as well as helping the golf club in terms of course development.

“As a TGI partner, if you don’t attend the conference you are missing out on a lot of educational material that can help move your business forward and also finding out that as PGA pros, we all face a lot of the same challenges and sharing ways to overcome these.”

Day two saw Phil Barnard and Mark Hopkins of XPOS gave an insight into the data gathered from their EPOS systems in golf retailing and Richard Barker of the PGA outlined the benefits of the PGA Play app to PGA professionals in dealing with enquiries regarding both tuition and custom fitting.

In a slight deviation from the norm and in recognition of Eddie Reid, TGI’s managing director standing down later in the year, Sky Sports Golf presenter Rob Lee hosted an interview with Eddie – where he shared the journey that lead him to TGI and his philosophy behind the way the partnership operates.

Ryan Rastall (Howley Hall GC) said: “As always the conference something that I massively look forward to, it’s great to get together with other TGI partners and catch up on what has worked for us and what hasn’t over the past year. It was great to hear from the guys from XPOS as this is something I am looking to change in my own shop and hearing from their insights from other businesses was really useful.

“Catching up with the retail consultants is always good it is great to hear what is happening in other businesses and the trends they see when out on the road.

“The awards dinner was also a highlight, seeing partners and suppliers recognised for the successful year they have had, good food, a few drinks and all in great venue.”

Eddie Reid closed the conference with an update of the current status of the group and invited Adele McLean, who takes over as managing director in April, to address partners where she thanked the board of directors and partners for their support and stated how much she is looking forward to taking on the role and all that it will entail.

Adele McLean, group services director, said: “It was great to see our 11th TGI Golf Business Conference return to The Belfry. It is always a great opportunity for our partners to get together and tie in some education and spend time with our partner suppliers.

“Thank you to all of those who helped to put this together and those who conducted seminars. Congratulations to all the award winners and thanks to all our Partners and Suppliers who helped us raise £9,500 for our TGI Golf Foundation.”

TGI Golf awards

The prestigious TGI Golf Partner of the Year award is heading across The Solent as Shanklin & Sandown PGA professional Peter Hammond takes the award back to the Isle of Wight.

Peter Hammond (Shanklin & Sandown GC, right) collects his award from TGI managing director Eddie Reid

There was also a hat trick of awards for PING which took home the Supplier, Hardware and Product of the Year awards, all of which are voted for by partners through TGI’s annual Supplier Survey.

Hammond, a TGI Golf partner for more than 20 years was crowned at the group’s awards night. He saw off competition from fellow nominees Peter Hanna (Lurgan), Darren Arber (Halifax West End) and David Ross (Royal Aberdeen).

Peter said: “I’m truly humbled to win this award in the company of so many great PGA professionals, there’s some real classy guys in this group. I have to say a huge thank you to my A team, including Sarah, my wife and accountant and Chris White my number one assistant. A huge thank you too to the team at TGI Golf for all their hard work in making the TGI Partnership the best partnership in golf.”

Leading figures from the golf industry attended the event where both PGA professionals and suppliers are recognised for their achievements over the course of the year.

Lee Sutherland from Ron McLeod’s Golf Shop based at Monifieth Golf Links claimed the Pro Shop of the Year award, while Gavin Abson and his team at West Lancs Golf Club won the Marquee Pro Shop of the Year.

Lee Sutherland, Ron McLeod’s Golf Shop (right) presented by TGI Ireland retail consultant Peter Smyth

Gavin Abson, The West Lancs Golf Club (right), with TGI South England retail consultant Simon Keeling

James Crawford of Waterlooville Golf Club picked up the Most Improved Business of the Year award, while Lindsay Boyd (Donaghadee Golf Club) was New Partner of the Year.

James Crawford, Waterlooville Golf Club (right), receiving his award from TGI North England Retail Consultant Chris Taylor

Lindsay Boyd, Donaghadee Golf Club (right), with TGI Scotland retail consultant Ricky Gray

There was also a special presentation to Eddie Reid, who the group surprised with the Ian Johnston Lifetime Achievement Award, given to a figure who has gone above and beyond for the group over many years.

Eddie said: “For once I’m absolutely speechless, I don’t know how the team have kept this from me. I have loved every minute and every second of my life at TGI and I am handing over to a team who are champing at the bit to get going to move it forward and take it to the next level as we celebrate our 40th year. The partners have made it all worth it there is nothing more gratifying than going into a retailer who wants to learn, wants to get better who wants to move their business forward.

“Thank you to all our suppliers who we have worked so closely with over the years to help our partners and our businesses move forward.

“Thank you very much for this award and congratulations to all the winners and nominees this year and for everyone’s hard work in pulling this event together.”

The supplier awards saw Peter Millar join PING in the winners’ circle as they collected Apparel Supplier of the Year.

Peter Millar – presented by Michael Brooks (Pumpherston GC) (right); collected by managing director and president Mark Hilton (left)

Dave Fanning, PING marketing director, said: “The team of engineers at Phoenix will be very proud of this award along with all the staff at PING. We are passionate about product, passionate about retail.

“When we first started working with TGI Golf more than 20 years ago I remember the word ‘trust’ being used and that is how our businesses have worked successfully together for so many years, we trust each other and work very closely together to do the most professional job we can.”





Alistair Dunsmuir
By Alistair Dunsmuir February 15, 2024 18:48
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