The COVID golf boom continues in 2021
In August 2020, Yahoo Finance wrote in The Morning Brief that the golf business was booming during the pandemic.
In August 2021, the industry only looks stronger.
Within the last week, we’ve seen golf’s two biggest publicly-traded companies — Titleist parent company Acushnet (GOLF) and Callaway Golf (ELY) — report quarterly results. And these reports indicated that just about every benefit that accrued to the industry during the pandemic has only improved this year.
Golf requires two things that some consumers found abundant during the pandemic — disposable income and idle time. The sport’s earned reputation is shaped by there being only a select group of people with ample access to both. But during the pandemic, millions of consumers suddenly found themselves thrown into both categories.
The latest data from the National Golf Foundation shows that rounds played through June are up 23% year-to-date, and running 19% above the 2017-2019 average.
Rounds at public courses are also outpacing growth in rounds at private clubs, with public rounds played up 26% this year against a 13% increase in private loops. Data that confirms what your humble public-playing author finds out each weekend: you can’t get a tee time anywhere these days.
“According to Golf Datatech, rounds played in June remained at an all-time high, and retail demand remains elevated,” Callaway Golf CEO Chip Brewer said on the company’s earnings conference call.
“More anecdotally,” Brewer added, “private club memberships are also experiencing exceptional demand, with [waitlists] developing at many clubs across the U.S. and the U.K. With more options for activities opened this spring and summer compared to last year, we were cautious that there could have been a potential slowdown in golf participation and/or demand. However, thus far, we’re pleased to report that we’re not seeing this from our seat in the market.” (Emphasis ours.)
Ahead of second quarter earnings season, Yahoo Finance argued in The Morning Brief that comparisons to 2019 would be key for businesses across the economy, with investors trying to make sense of which trends that took off during the pandemic would stick — and which would fade away.
And Brewer’s framing also shows how even those in the golf business were skeptical that 2020’s rush into the sport would be sustained.
“So what we saw in the second half of 2020, rounds were up 25% versus the prior year,” Acushnet CEO David Maher said on the company’s earnings call.
“I think  is a good baseline, right? We made the comment that rounds in the first half were up 20% over 2019. And just looking forward, I would think we’d see rounds of play up in the second half of this year in the 15% to 20% range versus 2019,” he added.
As for how this boom has translated to the income statement for both companies, Callaway reported golf equipment revenues that rose 91% in the second quarter, while Acushnet said golf club sales rose 111% and golf ball revenues were up 98.1%. Adjusted EBITDA also rose sharply for both — rising $94.7 million at Acushnet in the second quarter and by $135 million at Callaway.
Another development in the golf industry to watch will be Taylormade’s potential move to public markets, following the company’s recent sale to South Korea-based Centroid Investment Partners for just under $1.9 billion.
And as the world reopens and a new generation of golfers acquaints themselves with the sport’s challenges and frustrations, the future for the game still looks bright.
And one key theme to watch is that “new participants are increasingly younger,” Maher noted. “They’re hooked on the game. They want to get better. We’ve talked about increased lessons throughout the industry in all markets, and that continues. And as a result, the game has become less intimidating and more welcoming.”
This article first appeared on Yahoo Finance
iPort granted inland customs status as huge speculative warehouse build to add almost 700,000 sq ft
The 800-acre South Yorkshire site can now clear goods heading in both directions through the Channel Tunnel, while also securing HMRC’s Authorised Economic Operator status.
It comes as a further 680,000 sq ft of warehousing is to be developed at the multi-modal location.
Paul Bathgate, business solutions director for IPort Rail, said: “We’ve seen in the past 18 months how important it is to have reliable, efficient supply chains for import and export. Rail freight to/from Doncaster is one way to help minimise disruption and cut carbon emissions at the same time.
“Sea ports are already under pressure, roads are congested and with more Brexit changes ahead businesses need a wider range of options to keep their supply chains moving from port to door.
“Now goods going to or coming from Yorkshire, the North of England and the Midlands can bypass South Coast ports more easily with Channel Tunnel services able to clear customs in South Yorkshire. We can also support businesses on the paperwork and practicalities too.
“Ultimately, this is another way for businesses to fulfil supply chain needs more sustainably and efficiently.”
The new customs capability includes a temporary storage facility creating an approved area where inventory-linked goods under customs control can be held until they are released to free circulation, with duties charged on release. It also has an area for UK Border Force authorities to examine and take account of goods.
Developed by Verdion, it opened nearly three years ago, running daily services to sea ports and moving 500 containers a day.
Working in partnership with Healthcare of Ontario Pension Plan, the latest speculative development will deliver four huge buildings ranging from 116,000 sq ft to 260,000 sq ft – with completion anticipated by autumn 2022.
The first, a 173,500 sq ft addition, is expected to complete for Christmas.
An earlier speculative phased build completed in March, with the final two units taken by Woodland Group and a luxury homeware retailer.
They joined Amazon, Ceva, Fellowes, Lidl, Maritime Transport and Kingsbury Press alongside the East Coast Main Line and M18, which provides a direct motorway link to the A1, M1 and M62.
John Clements, executive director of Verdion, said: “This is an extraordinary market, with no high-quality new space above 100,000 sq ft currently available in South or West Yorkshire and occupier demand remaining strong.
“This development programme steps up the pace and will deliver a range of new warehousing throughout the park designed to meet requirements across a number of size bands. Although many businesses will be driven by ecommerce sector growth and employment opportunities, we’re also expecting others drawn by the significant power available and opportunity to move into rail freight.
“Speed is going to be important, but these sites are already prepared for development with services installed and materials pre-ordered so we’re in a position to move quickly.”
Gent Visick, Colliers and CBRE are acting as leasing agents for Verdion.
Original post from Business Doncaster
How will the UK speed its economic recovery?
What are countries doing to speed their economic recovery? In the UK we’ve been noticing a great deal of investment in infrastructure and, especially, into labour and upskilling the nation. Which industries are going to be biggest over the next decade, vital to support the recovery? We delve deeper into the subject.
What does hospitality mean to the UK economic recovery?
The world has undergone a major shift in decision-making and buying power that is gradually changing the hospitality industry. The only way, as an investor, to see continued success, is to prepare for these inevitable changes.
As of 2019, Millennials had officially overtaken Baby Boomers in the workforce. Their reign is expected to last well into 2034, at which point Gen Z will be fully employable So, as an industry, we can’t ignore them, and now they are demanding that hotels go green.
A recent study revealed that one in three consumers now prefer sustainable brands, and the travel industry is taking note. TripAdvisor, for example, has developed its Green Leaders Program showcasing hotels with environmentally-friendly best practices to conscientious travellers, such as hotels going green with LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design).
Post-pandemic hospitality trends
Footfall across the UK is now at 80% of pre-Covid levels, with the majority of regions seeing a steep uplift following so-called ‘Freedom Day’ in comparison to the previous week (12-18 July). Bars across the nation enjoyed a 10% rise in footfall- not since the UK entered into lockdown, with London bars spearheading the growth (18%). Despite mostly late-night establishment experiencing the biggest boost, casual dining restaurants also saw a positive impact across the UK (6%), with the cities of Edinburgh and Cardiff leading the charge at 16% and 14% respectively, the largest increase in footfall coming from the over 35-year-olds (8%) followed by the 25–35-year-olds (7%). “Now that we are seeing consumer confidence levels continue to rise and with the opening up for late night venues, we’re hoping to see footfall not just increase, but start to climb back up to pre-Covid levels. This will not happen immediately with a simple flick of the switch but we are committed to supporting hospitality venues in their recovery. One of the legacies of the pandemic is going to be the commitment to technology and new trading models, that have helped businesses survive over the past 16 months, and we’re eager to continue to support our customers in this way as they tackle the weeks and months ahead,” said Julian Ross, CEO and founder of Wireless Social.
The U.K. is the world’s fifth largest economy by GDP and the most advanced market for Internet retailing in the whole of Europe.
A long history of economic development, international trade and political stability has resulted in a highly developed and diversified economy. International companies and investors are also attracted by the U.K.’s high levels of transparency in conducting business, strong legal system and competitive taxation regime.
How e-Commerce will spur the UK’s recovery
The U.K. is the second largest consumer market in Western Europe, disposable income per capita was £35,856 (mean) £29,897 (median) in 2020. Despite a low level of economic growth—similar to levels in other advanced economies—household discretionary spending power is forecast to increase above average in 2021.
The UK’s highly developed financial services market also provides easy access to consumer credit, with U.K. consumers feeling very comfortable making payments with bank cards.
The existence of a highly advanced environment for online business offers solid prospects for long-term growth in e-commerce. Although Brexit is still creating some disruption to various operational aspects of doing business, major players in the Internet economy—led by the FAANG companies (Facebook, Apple, Amazon, Netflix, and Google)—are continuing to strengthen their presences and build consumer awareness.
The country is highly urbanised and digital and commercial infrastructure in other metropolitan centres are highly developed, for example, Amazon recently opened its first UK corporate office outside of London, and has plans to employ over 600 “highly skilled” tech and non-tech employees in Manchester. Amazon is to create more than 10,000 new jobs in the UK by the end of the year as it continues its rapid expansion amid a boom in online shopping.
The e-commerce and web services company plans to open a parcel centre and four new warehouses, taking its total UK workforce to 55,000.
It said it will also invest a further £10m over three years training up to 5,000 people in skills that they can use in careers outside of Amazon. Kwasi Kwarteng, the business secretary, said the move was “a huge vote of confidence in the British economy”. The new permanent roles will be in engineering, human resources, computing, health and safety, finance, and fulfilling customer orders.
A new warehouse, or “fulfilment centre”, will open in Hinckley, east Midlands, this summer, creating 700 new permanent jobs. The company intends open a parcel centre in Doncaster and further fulfilment centres in Dartford, Gateshead, and Swindon that will each create more than 1,300 permanent jobs later this year. New jobs will also be created in corporate offices, web services and operations networks in areas including London, Manchester, Edinburgh, and Cambridge.
Prime Central London – leading UK house price growth forecasts over the next five years
November 2020, the ONS survey confirmed a continuing trend with house prices in Inner London continuing to grow more quickly than Outer London, with two London boroughs having annual house price growth above 20% with Kensington and Chelsea, experiencing the highest annual price growth at 28.6%. ONS.gov.uk Coming in to 2021, demand for property in prime central London continues to grow, property prices across prime London increased by an average of 0.6% in the first three months of the year.
This means that all parts of prime London have now returned to price growth. Confirmation that despite a lack of international investment prime central London remained surprisingly robust, and a marker of its resilience despite the market being largely reliant on domestic wealth during 2020. For domestic and international buyers alike, property values currently still 20.5% below their 2014 peak, prime central London remains a good buying opportunity. Savills – “This is translating into rising activity levels, something we expect to continue over the coming months, particularly as London begins to regain some of its buzz”.
Yorkshire & The Humber labelled the new ‘dark-horse’ for asking price sales
Perhaps, one thing that the property industry could not have foreseen occurring in the midst of a global pandemic is the incredible performance of the Northern market, and in particular the Humber region.
In the past year the media have reported a steady increase in house price growth. Speculation from many industry experts suggested this was due to the resilient performance of the market, and the growing residential demand among a population eager to relocate. According to the most recent and available sold price data provided by the Land Registry, 37% of homes in Yorkshire and the Humber region have achieved their final asking price or above. The Land Registry have also commented that this result is significantly higher than the average 23% collected between the years of 2005 and 2020. Prior to the new highs set by the Humber region, the last record set was 36% collected in May 2016.
An even more impressive figure, according to the Land Registry, Yorkshire and the Humber produced market-leading results with an incredible 45% of sellers achieving at least their asking price. This data is reflective of the agent and buyer bidding wars that have been continuing in the presence of the market reopening last year and further demonstrates the building demand for property in the midst of a national home-centric social change.
Director of Benham & Reeves, Marc von Grundherr, commented on the predictable nature of the market’s success with such a large proportion of home sales entering the pipeline in the wake of the SDLT holiday and extension deadline. He further comments that pent-up demand has led to a 50% hike in buyer demand and therefore increased the transaction pipeline in conveyancing. Whilst there may be some disparity in the degree of house price growth nationally, growth has been consistent.
The government’s success in furthering the nation’s economic and employment recovery rate, coupled with low interest rates, and an opening hospitality industry, are all strong indicators that the positive reaction we have seen in the property market show no sign of relenting.
According to property platform giants Zoopla, the value average for properties in Yorkshire and the Humber have increased by an astounding 5.9 % in the past year alone. Similarly, Chief Analyst for Yopa estate agency predicted a high probability that the lifting of Covid restrictions, coupled with the re-evaluation of housing priorities undergone by many homeowners during lockdown, and the savings accumulated over the past year means that demand and opportunity for relocation have rarely been more closely aligned.
A fact which will drive the housing market’s success to fruition for the rest of 2021 at least.
Accumulate Capital Review Investing in Property Bonds
What property bonds are and how to make them work for you
Schemes to help individuals get a foot on the property ladder have been offered for decades, enforcing the idea that owning property is the most traditional and guaranteed way to accumulate profit.
However, finding the funding to get started on your property investment can sometimes be a problem. So even though the promise of high returns is within reach, it can be quite a task to get there.
The solution to this is property bonds.
The most traditional methods for investing in property such as property flipping, buy to let and property development all require a significant amount of capital, time and effort. However, there are other ways to be involved in the property market without going through hassle, saving your bank balance and peace of mind.
But property bonds let you invest in the property market with a much lower amount of capital. Here’s an example of how property bonds work:
- A developer plans a new construction scheme. This could be either a commercial or residential property development.
- Instead of seeking finance from banks or other lenders, the property developer issues bonds to raise the funds required to complete the development.
- Land purchased to develop the scheme, and the development itself, are often offered as security for those investing in the bonds.
- You can then become one of many investors purchasing the bonds. The investment you make is usually for a fixed term which is typically between 12 months and five years; here at Accumulate we mainly offer shorter terms.
- The developer uses the money raised from the sales of bonds to proceed with the project.
- Typically, you will get a return, either quarterly or yearly, on your investment. Depending on the property bond you choose, this is normally between five and 12 per cent. Accumulate Capital goes above this average and offers investors ROIs of between 12 and 15 per cent.
- At the end of the fixed term, you can take out your investment along with the total return.
The developer of the property can generate the money to pay you a return on your investment in a number of ways. The most common are:
- Refinancing the property
- Using proceeds from the sale of the property
- From rental income
Property bonds are also attractive to high-value investors too.
High-value investors can choose to become the developer or buy-to-let landlord, but this involves getting directly involved in the property. Many investors, however, prefer a more hands-off investment option. In other words, they see the potential for return in the UK property market, but don’t have the necessary time or experience.
So, those investors purchase bonds, effectively performing the function of a bank, i.e. giving developers access to funds.