Retail giant Golfsmith International, Inc. plans to expand its reach into Australia and New Zealand in a new alliance aimed at growing its equipment brands MacGregor and Lynx and apparel brand Maggie Lane. The licensing and distribution partnership with Walkinshaw Sports is the first step in what Golfsmith calls a “global expansion strategy’’ aimed at forming partnerships around the world to build, manage and market its proprietary brands.
Basically, the deal is a way for Golfsmith to market MacGregor, Lynx and Maggie Lane away from the clutter of the major equipment brands that its retail stores also carry and create an international following for those brands. It could be a lucrative deal, particularly on the MacGregor side because the brand still carries a lot of equity in overseas markets.
Golfsmith acquired MacGregor Golf in 2009 from a company fronted by Aussie star Greg Norman. Golfsmith acquired Lynx Golf, whose equipment was once played by Fred Couples, in 1998.
The partnership includes a five-year distribution agreement that will allow Walkinshaw to distribute MacGregor Golf equipment throughout the on-course and off-course specialty retail channels in Australia and New Zealand, and a five-year licensing agreement for Lynx and Maggie Lane. Golfsmith said the alliance will allow the company to grow its brands, but also to reinvest those licensing revenues back into its core U.S. business.