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Apr weather epic down; Mar Utilization provides silver lining

 

Golf Weather Impact:
How Bad Was April? Epically...

True Club

April weather damage was deep and broad as Golf Playable Hours (GPH) were down 19% vs. Year-Ago (YA).  That moved the Year-to-Date (YtD) GPH to -14% which only represented a modest decline from March's -10% level (but it's moving the wrong direction and in double-digit decline territory).  Regional breadth swung solidly negative at 1:4 with 8 favorable regions vs. 32 unfavorables and 5 in the neutral zone (+/- 2%) with all 45 regions now "in season."  Subscribers to either the Pellucid Publications Membership or the Geographic Weather Impact report get the 45 regional breakdowns, the 61 markets figures, the day-of-week weather impact and the Year-End National GPH forecast figure as well as our full commentary on the results every month.

Played Rounds for March as published by Golf Datatech showed a return to our pre-COVID pattern with rounds predictably following weather "south" registering a 14% decline, consistent with our "call" of double-digit-down for rounds based on the March weather we already knew.  According to Datatech, Public drove the decrease at -16% compared to Private which was -10%.  To the critical question of how much weather impacted the significant rounds decline, recall that the previously-reported March GPH drop was -19% so Utilization provides the "truth" of how we performed reflected in the 3 point gain and breaks our eight consecutive month decline in this key metric.

Jim Koppenhaver comments on the results, "After having to chronicle the March 19% decline in GPH I thought "It can't get much worse than this" but, unfortunately April proved me wrong.  The bigger challenge is that April is a bigger rounds contributor to the year than March so this one's actually going to hurt more in the grand scheme of '22.  I was also thinking that it may be against an elevated base in '21 but, when compared against the 10-yr Norm, '22 was double-digits worse than "normal" as well so there was no solace there.  The silver lining, as outlined in detail in April's Outside the Ropes, is the Utilization Rate (weather-adjusted consumer demand) climbed slightly in March which suggests that the COVIdend is still present if we can get a break from Mother Nature in May and beyond.  Notable market gainers in Utilization March Year-to-Date (YtD) were Miami and Dallas, both up double digits.  Los Angeles/Orange County is the notable key market loser on the same metric and period.  Due to the diligence of Golf Market Research Center subscribers submitting their figures promptly each month, we've seen the April early returns for Rounds and Golf Revenue and it appears that we'll register gains in both Utilization and RevpAR for April as well so that's the silver lining as we wade through the early season weather ugliness.  If you were a GMRC subscriber, you'd know those numbers and whether to panic or stay the course on marketing and financial projections for the season."

Speaking of the GMRC and the ability for courses to see their monthly performance in comparative reports the day the month closes, we're still offering a free 2-wk trial of the tool.  We know from our visibility to the Golf Revenue numbers that courses are generally flush with cash (we've also seen all the public domain articles on renovations, massive CapEx spending etc. to corroborate) so we'd hazard a guess that the $500 investment decision isn't being hampered by lack of funds.  Program participants have been able to view graphic, single page monthly trend reports for Rounds and Utilization from '19-'21 as well as having a 7 measure KPI single page report for any month and YtD period for which they entered data.  The GMRC gives you visibility to your Market Profile and, after you enter your Rounds, Golf Revenue and Peak Season GF Rate by month, to immediately see your results through our comparative reports with integrated weather impact.  So how do you "get in on the action"?  Glad you asked...

You can email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. , to subscribe (see below for benefits) and get started by inputting your information through th current month or if you'd like to engage in the 2-wk trial

If you'd like more information you have two options:
  • Watch the 18 minute GoToWebinar recording of the program overview and a demonstration of the portal and reports (fill in your name and email and it will open the video link; you're not signing up for anything)
  • Review the 2-pg program overview (Download Here) 

Here's the details on what you get in the current promo deal:

  • GMRC Market profile (golfers, supply/mix/demand balance, Utilization etc.)
  • Monthly trends report (Rounds & Utilization, any month and YtD '19-'21)
  • KPI Scorecard (7 KPIs for month & YtD, single page, Year Ago comparisons)
  • Cognilogic (historical facility-specific Golf Playable Hours and Capacity Rounds, normally sold as separate service at $180/yr) and
  • Foresight (brand new, facility-level 60-day Capacity Rounds forecast and key weather variables used to produce it, normally sold separately at $360/yr)
  • We think this package of services including GMRC at $500/yr ($450 for NGCOA members) is a great value and timely for assessing '21's performance and beginning your '22 planning

Final cherry-on-top, GMRC is a product in the NGCOA SmartBuy program so there's a member benefit (10% discount) for the annual subscription.

You can order any of the above information services via Pellucid's Online Store.

Sincerely,
Jim Koppenhaver