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WUTiger

TGR Prototype irons and Nike patents

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After Nike exited the golf hard goods industry in August 2016, Ping stepped up and arranged in April 2017 to buy several Nike patents for clubs and ball.

As one of the first modern golf club OEMs, Ping has a reputation for resisting the use of outside technology. I imagine Ping wants people to forget Nike, and bought the patents in part to preempt any adventurous startups.

But, the WITB threads show that Tiger was playing custom TGR Prototype irons in November. A former Nike employee reported they were made at The Oven in Fort Worth before Nike shut it down.

5a4d1a77077c9_TGRirons.jpg.1ca1e7cdca0b03f226165dbe7225ed16.jpg  

Next, Tiger started the new year circa Jan. 25 by signing an Endorsement Deal with TaylorMade

So, does this TM deal pretty well mean than Nike golf clubs are destined for the gone and forgotten category of golf clubs? Any chance for them to return as a boxed-set-only brand?

Edited by WUTiger
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22 minutes ago, WUTiger said:

So, does this TM deal pretty well mean than Nike golf clubs are destined for the gone and forgotten category of golf clubs? Any chance for them to return as a boxed-set-only brand?

Huh?

Nike got out of the club business. There won't be more Nike golf clubs. I'm not sure what you're asking.

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24 minutes ago, iacas said:

Nike got out of the club business. There won't be more Nike golf clubs. I'm not sure what you're asking.

I'm asking, is there any chance the Nike name will re-emerge in golf? Other brands have died and then come back to life. Examples in recent history:

Nickent was a newbie company in the early 2000s, becoming dominant in hybrids about 2006. But, Nickent went out of business in 2009 after a failed bid to jump into the adjustable driver market. Dick's bought the name and briefly offered Nickent FWs and hybrids through Golf Galaxy. Didn't last more than a couple of years.

MacGregor changed owners several times beginning in 1985, eventually being bought by Golfsmith in 2009. After a two-year hiatus, MacGregor reemerged as a popular store brand for Golfsmith. I'm not sure of MacGregor's status, given Dick's recent purchase of Golfsmith.

Hogan. In 2003, Callaway won a bidding war with TM and bought Acushnet: Calla got Top Flite, Strata and Hogan clubs and balls. Top Flite and Strata clubs went to boxed sets, and Hogan model names and tech were incorporated into Callaway irons: the short-lived Edge, and the now popular Apex line.

In 2012, Callaway then sold the Hogan name and certain rights to Perry Ellis; Texan Terry Koehler talked PE into letting him resurrect the Hogan golf company.  (Your guess is as good as mine on whether new Hogan golf will survive its recent rollercoaster ride). 

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1 hour ago, WUTiger said:

I'm asking, is there any chance the Nike name will re-emerge in golf? Other brands have died and then come back to life. Examples in recent history:

Nickent was a newbie company in the early 2000s, becoming dominant in hybrids about 2006. But, Nickent went out of business in 2009 after a failed bid to jump into the adjustable driver market. Dick's bought the name and briefly offered Nickent FWs and hybrids through Golf Galaxy. Didn't last more than a couple of years.

MacGregor changed owners several times beginning in 1985, eventually being bought by Golfsmith in 2009. After a two-year hiatus, MacGregor reemerged as a popular store brand for Golfsmith. I'm not sure of MacGregor's status, given Dick's recent purchase of Golfsmith.

Hogan. In 2003, Callaway won a bidding war with TM and bought Acushnet: Calla got Top Flite, Strata and Hogan clubs and balls. Top Flite and Strata clubs went to boxed sets, and Hogan model names and tech were incorporated into Callaway irons: the short-lived Edge, and the now popular Apex line.

In 2012, Callaway then sold the Hogan name and certain rights to Perry Ellis; Texan Terry Koehler talked PE into letting him resurrect the Hogan golf company.  (Your guess is as good as mine on whether new Hogan golf will survive its recent rollercoaster ride). 

I'd say there's very little chance of that happening. I'm assuming PING bought technology patents from Nike, not trademarks, so it's not like PING is going to start making clubs with a swoosh on them. All of your examples are brands that were bought by existing OEMs or stores, which I don't think would happen to Nike either.

The only way it would happen is if golf somehow became way more popular and Nike felt like they were leaving money on the table by not producing equipment. 

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Successful business know when to cut ties with certain brands, divisions, or products. It was time for Nike. Stick to the bread and butter of clothing and shoes. Not saying their clubs were inferior to any other brand, but you gotta sell a product. 

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Tho

3 hours ago, WUTiger said:

I'm asking, is there any chance the Nike name will re-emerge in golf? Other brands have died and then come back to life. Examples in recent history:

Nickent was a newbie company in the early 2000s, becoming dominant in hybrids about 2006. But, Nickent went out of business in 2009 after a failed bid to jump into the adjustable driver market. Dick's bought the name and briefly offered Nickent FWs and hybrids through Golf Galaxy. Didn't last more than a couple of years.

MacGregor changed owners several times beginning in 1985, eventually being bought by Golfsmith in 2009. After a two-year hiatus, MacGregor reemerged as a popular store brand for Golfsmith. I'm not sure of MacGregor's status, given Dick's recent purchase of Golfsmith.

Hogan. In 2003, Callaway won a bidding war with TM and bought Acushnet: Calla got Top Flite, Strata and Hogan clubs and balls. Top Flite and Strata clubs went to boxed sets, and Hogan model names and tech were incorporated into Callaway irons: the short-lived Edge, and the now popular Apex line.

In 2012, Callaway then sold the Hogan name and certain rights to Perry Ellis; Texan Terry Koehler talked PE into letting him resurrect the Hogan golf company.  (Your guess is as good as mine on whether new Hogan golf will survive its recent rollercoaster ride). 

Those were little companies whose names were purchased by bigger companies. Nike is a big company not likely to sell their name to someone else. Plus Nike equipment sucked IMHO. :-P

 

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Potential for Ping to release a "budget" range of clubs and ball or sell them on to the highest bidder for a tasty profit a little further down the line?

Or maybe they saw them and thought the designs were too good to let another big name competitor get their grubby mitts on them and are now filed under B for Bin?

 

 

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