PGA Tour Says It Will Offer Equity Ownership to Players
The PGA Tour said on Tuesday that it will offer professional golfers direct ownership in an entity being formed through its pending combination with Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund and the DP World Tour, according to a memo sent to players by Commissioner Jay Monahan and reviewed by Bloomberg.
“Tour management has designed a program that would align the interests of our members with the commercial business of the tour via direct equity ownership in PGA Tour Enterprises,” Monahan wrote. “This would be a unique offering in professional sports, as no other league grants its players/members direct equity ownership in the league’s business.”
The tour will be stronger if players are “more closely aligned with the commercial success of the business,” Monahan said, adding that he believes other potential investors feel the same way. The PGA Tour is continuing to negotiate with outside investors and will select a potential partner or partners in “a timely manner,” he said.
A PGA Tour spokesman confirmed the memo’s contents and declined to comment further.
Billionaire Henry Kravis and Fenway Sports, the owner of the Boston Red Sox and Liverpool FC, are among US investors considering buying a stake in the PGA Tour, Bloomberg News reported in September. Billionaire New York Mets owner Steve Cohen is working with the Fenway group, a person with knowledge of the matter said.
His involvement was earlier reported by Golfweek, which said the PGA Tour had drawn interest from prospective investors including Todd Boehly’s Eldridge and Steven Mnuchin’s Liberty Strategic Capital. George Roberts is working with Kravis and other individuals in a consortium being referred to as the “Friends of Golf,” Golfweek reported.