Chip Brewer’s golf history is on the club side. The new president and chief executive officer of Callaway Golf Company turned Adams Golf into a major power the past 10 years. No doubt his mandate at Callaway is to restore the company to the metal woods success – of not dominance – it had in the 1990s.
But ask Brewer, who came to Callaway this past March, what he’s most excited about with the company, and the answer might surprise you.
“The golf ball business,” Brewer said.
Understand that Callaway’s golf business has never been as successful as company founder Ely Callaway envisioned when he launched the ball business more than a decade ago. Golf balls weren’t part of the Callaway culture, haven’t been profitable as a business division and basically have been a distraction to the company’s core business.
So what about Callaway’s golf business has Brewer excited? Three letters – H-E-X.
Callaway’s HEX Black and HEX Chrome golf balls are the foundations of the future of the company’s golf ball business. The HEX Black Tour ball, a five-piece ball that features what the company calls “Spin Separation,” is one of the best premium balls on the market. The HEX Chrome is just as good but at a lower price point (around $35 per dozen versus $45 per dozen for HEX Black) and aimed at players with slower swing speeds.
“The fundamental things we need to make money in golf balls is to make a golf ball people want to play and buy,” Brewer said. “I think we have that right now. The technology platform and the performance of the HEX Black Tour is outstanding. There are no weaknesses in the product.
“We’re starting to see us gain market share in the premium category. As we continue to do that we’ll be able to pull the right levers to produce profitability in the category. We have a lot of hard work to keep that going – there is a lot of good competition – but most important building block of it is underway.”