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Titleist Acquired by Fila Korea Ltd. and Mirae Asset Private Equity for $1.2B

post #1 of 43
Thread Starter 

From a press release I was just emailed:

 

 

Fairhaven, MA (May 20, 2011) – Acushnet Company announced today that its parent company, Fortune Brands, Inc., has signed a definitive agreement for the sale of the company to a group led by Fila Korea, Ltd., the owner of the Fila brand globally, and Mirae Asset Private Equity, the largest private equity firm in Korea. 
 
Acushnet Company is one of the largest golf equipment companies in the world with annual sales of more than $1.2 billion in 2010.  Its premium and storied brands include Titleist, the #1 ball in golf and a leader in high performance golf clubs, and FootJoy, the #1 shoe, glove and performance outerwear brand in golf. 
 
“The Acushnet Company has long been the trusted steward of two of golf’s most revered and iconic brands, and has perpetuated the longest running records of golf equipment success in the game,” said Wally Uihlein, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Acushnet Company. “The Fila Korea and Mirae group understands and appreciates our golf industry leadership, passionate associates, and unique and enduring culture. Together, with our new owners, our team is looking forward to strengthening and building upon the global success of the Titleist and FootJoy brands.” 
 
After the acquisition, Acushnet will remain as a standalone company through separate operation from Fila Korea, with its worldwide headquarters remaining in Fairhaven, Mass., and led by Uihlein and Acushnet’s current management team. 
 
The Acushnet Company has a history of successful growth and evolution. The Golf Division was founded in 1932, with the first Titleist golf ball brought to market in 1935. Fortune Brands acquired the Acushnet Company in 1976, and Acushnet acquired FootJoy in 1985. Acushnet’s net sales in 1975 were $51 million and with the combined strength of both brands have grown more than twenty-fold over the past thirty-five years. 
 
The Titleist golf ball embodies product performance and quality excellence, and has been the #1 ball in golf for over sixty years and still counting. Titleist golf clubs have also earned broad acceptance with golf’s pyramid of influence through an unwavering commitment to performance, quality and fitting. 
 
FootJoy has been the unequivocal leader in the golf shoe product category for more than seventy years and has owned the #1 position in golf gloves for more than three decades. 
 
“We appreciate what Fortune Brands has contributed to the growth of our business over the last thirty-five years,” said Uihlein. “The support, encouragement and guidance they provided helped fuel our leadership position in the industry and marketplace.  Together, we achieved record-setting milestones.” 
 
Established in Italy in 1911, Fila is a leading sport and leisure footwear and apparel brand that is distributed worldwide. The group, led by Fila Korea and Mirae, also includes the National Pension Service of Korea, the fourth largest pension fund in the world, and Korea Development Bank, Korea’s largest government-owned bank. 
 
“The acquisition of Acushnet transforms our platform with a stable of premier world class brands,” said Gene Yoon, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Fila Korea, Ltd. “We are equally excited to embrace Acushnet’s exceptional management team led by Wally Uihlein. With our extensive knowledge and reach in Asia, we believe that the Acushnet brands have incredible new opportunities for growth in the emerging markets in Asia.” 
 
“We are very impressed with what Acushnet management and employees have accomplished so far,” said JH Ryu, CEO, Mirae Asset Private Equity. “We will fully support the company to remain focused on its core golf expertise and continue driving the growth of the industry.” 
 
"Titleist and FootJoy are powerful global golf brands,” said Uihlein. “The fact that Asia Pacific represents over 30% of the world's total golf equipment spending, and that South Korean golfers are among the most passionate and organized in the game, is testament to the significant investment in the Acushnet Company by the Fila Korea and Mirae group. They recognize the strength of the brands and opportunities for growth particularly in golf's emerging regions.” 
 
The sale is subject to certain closing conditions, including regulatory approvals, and the transaction is expected to close this summer.
 

 
Yes, this Fila:
 
fila2.jpg
post #2 of 43

Hmmm, I'll be watching to see what this does to the stock price.  Not much has changed since they first announced this in Dec 2010.  Down less than 1% so far today.  Curious to see if the "buy on rumor, sell on news" plays out here. 

post #3 of 43

Looks like Wally just "won" the lottery. Haha! Geddit? Like the Korean currency? I slay me!

 

Reads like a sweet deal for Acushnet -- new owner promises to shovel cash into business and otherwise keep hands off. We'll see how that holds up if they start missing their EBITDA targets.  

post #4 of 43
Quote:
Originally Posted by iacas View Post


 
Yes, this Fila:
 
fila2.jpg



Those shoes would go perfectly with a set of AP1s and a Kombi putter!!

 

post #5 of 43


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by sean_miller View Post





Those shoes would go perfectly with a set of AP1s and a Kombi putter!!

 

 

lol. this has to be the weirdest news Ive heard this week. Fila is a weird brand

 

 

post #6 of 43
Quote:
Originally Posted by sean_miller View Post





Those shoes would go perfectly with a set of AP1s and a Kombi putter!!

 

 

Anyone remember the Fila Latitude "shank proof" irons with the face in front of the hosel? 2012 AP3 baby!
 

 

post #7 of 43

Wow....Fila still exists?

post #8 of 43
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kieran123 View Post

Wow....Fila still exists?



yea look in TJ maxx, their shirts go for 5 bucks. lol

post #9 of 43
Quote:
Originally Posted by sean_miller View Post





Those shoes would go perfectly with a set of AP1s and a Kombi putter!!

 



Lol!! I use AP1's and I would say you hit it on the head!

 

post #10 of 43
Quote:
Originally Posted by motteler621 View Post





yea look in TJ maxx, their shirts go for 5 bucks. lol



Ha, I just bought a pair of Fila windbreaker pants from Kohl's for like $20.  I can't even find them on the website anymore...

post #11 of 43

Likely nothing will change.  Fila will be a hands-off own who lets Titleist go about their business, which really would be nothing different than what Fortune Brands did.

post #12 of 43
Thread Starter 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by TitleistWI View Post

Likely nothing will change.  Fila will be a hands-off own who lets Titleist go about their business, which really would be nothing different than what Fortune Brands did.


Probably this, yes. Just got another email to the Team Titleist members:

 


 

Dear Erik:

As you may recall, we reached out to you back in December 2010 to provide you with an update surrounding the news that Fortune Brands, the parent company of the Acushnet Company, had approved a plan for the sale of the Acushnet Company.

Earlier today, Fortune Brands announced that it has signed an agreement for the sale of Acushnet Company to a consortium led by Fila Korea Ltd., the owner of the Fila brand globally, and Mirae Asset Private Equity, the largest private equity firm in Korea.

As part of the announcement it was communicated that Acushnet's worldwide headquarters will remain in Fairhaven, Mass., and Fila Korea and Mirae have expressed their intent to maintain Acushnet as a standalone operation and keep the Acushnet management team in place.

Together, with our new owners, our mission remains unchanged, and that is to continue to perpetuate and grow the Titleist and the FootJoy brands as the product category leaders in quality and performance.

To provide you with some additional insight and details surrounding the announcement we have included links to a blog post and press release below.

All of us at Team Titleist truly appreciate your continued support as your enthusiasm for the Titleist brand has helped us build upon our leadership position in the industry. 

We look forward to this next chapter in the storied success of Titleist and we are excited to have all of our valued Team Titleist members on-board for the journey.

post #13 of 43

Thanks for the updates Erik.  Good to see that Titleist and Footjoy not only won't be gobbled up by a competitor but also left alone to continue to develop their brands as standalone businesses.  Hopefully Fila Korea maintains this philosophy beyond the acquisition period and doesn't attempt to merge them or change their business practices. 

post #14 of 43
Quote:
Originally Posted by Stretch View Post

Anyone remember the Fila Latitude "shank proof" irons with the face in front of the hosel? 2012 AP3 baby!

 

Capture.JPG

 

Capture2.JPG

 

post #15 of 43

great, more outsourcing

 

I can't see any good in this

post #16 of 43
Thread Starter 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by q7w View Post

great, more outsourcing

 

I can't see any good in this

 

Did you read anything above?

post #17 of 43

Interesting to see Fila gobble them up. Wonder what Callaway's bid was?

post #18 of 43
Quote:
Originally Posted by q7w View Post

great, more outsourcing

 

I can't see any good in this



So where's the bad?

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