March 11, 2019 admin

Whether you are an investor in a resort, daily play or private golf course and or club, all golf course and club owners have questions that keep them up at night.

“Are we providing the best product and services to our customers?”

“Are our company employees happy and motivated to do their best?”

“Will our budgets be in the black or red this quarter/year?”

These are all equitable questions and it makes sense, at first glance, why owners may not consider evaluating their business. After all, aren’t business valuations necessary only when the owner is ready to sell or transfer interest? The short answer is no.

Completing a valuation and exit strategy NOW is indispensable, as you will exit. Whether it’s one year or thirty years down the road, you will exit. Valuing what you have worked so diligently to build helps prepare yourself, your company and your estate to help you receive full value. Owners must realize that ideal and not ideal scenarios are equally deserving of full planning.

Due to the declining demographic trends in golf businesses, more courses and clubs have closed than opened over the past two years. Given the specialized nature of the golf properties, the application of the comparable sales approach is preferred by banks. Unfortunately, in today’s market many sales are distressed, or at least not stabilized, despite an amble amount of course owners who want to sell.

The sooner you value your business the more accurate, nimble and efficient the exit plan will be. Proper exit planning takes time. You cannot know what you want or need to receive from the golf course business until you create a starting block for discussion.  The reality for most club owners is their present value is not what they need to net in order to achieve their personal retirement goals. Exit planning always begins with first knowing your desired departure date, followed by the amount you need or want to receive from the business and to whom you wish to sell or transfer. Completing a business valuation helps facilitate this type of planning.

For more information on “How to Exit your Club or Golf Course with Money in your Pocket,” contact Fred Layman President of Fred Layman Ventures, LLC at

Fred W. Layman III, USPTA Elite, NGCOA, Director of Operations/COO, The Windermere Club, is the President of an Augusta, GA based Multi-Sports and Health Club Consulting Company, Fred Layman Ventures, LLC. His articles can be viewed on

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