Golf club hire firm seals deal with German travel group TUI

Golf club hire business backed by Ryder Cup captain Paul McGinley signs deal

ClubstoHire, the golf club hire business backed by Ryder Cup captain Paul McGinley, has signed a deal with German travel group TUI. Photograph: Getty

ClubstoHire, the golf club hire business backed by Ryder Cup captain Paul McGinley, has signed a deal with German travel group TUI. Photograph: Getty

 

ClubstoHire, the golf club hire business backed by Ryder Cup captain Paul McGinley, has signed a deal with German travel group TUI that will give it access to 125,000 travelling golfers.

From next month, golfers booking holidays through TUI and its subsidiary brands will be offered the chance to rent a set of golf clubs at eight European, Turkish and Moroccan destinations through the three-year-old Irish company.

Airlines typically charge between €100 and €150 to carry a set of clubs, according to ClubtoHire chief executive Tony Judge. “We charge between €35 and €60 a week to hire clubs,” he said.

The company has 4,000 sets of golf clubs across 21 golfing destinations in Europe and expects to rent between 50,000 and 60,000 sets this year, generating sales of €3 million, an increase of 30 per cent on 2013.

12,000 travel agents

The link to TUI – which will also see the service promoted through 12,000 travel agents across Europe – will contribute to this.

“I will be amazed if we did not get 25 per cent [of the 125,000],” said Mr Judge, who was attending the EY Entrepreneur of the Year chief executive retreat in Vancouver this week. Along with co-founder Gerry McKernan, he is one of this year’s finalists.

The deal with TUI was a year in the making, said Mr Judge, and followed a meeting with TUI’s head of golf tourism, Mario Schomann, at an awards ceremony in Germany.

‘Impressed with service’

“We have known about ClubstoHire for over two years and we are impressed with the quality of the product and services supplied,” he said in a statement yesterday.

ClubstoHire was set up three years ago by Mr Judge and Mr McKernan. Paul McGinley is the company ambassador.

Mr Judge is a former director of golf at Mount Juliet and ran St Margaret’s Golf and Country Club before moving to South Africa. He set up ClubstoHire following the closure of his property business.

Mr McKernan owns protective eyewear maker Athlone Optical.

The company rents clubs in 21 destinations and employs 32 people. It expects to add up to six jobs over the next six months as it plans to enter the Middle East and US markets.