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Golf Courses

SIC 7992 | NAICS 713910

The following guide to market research and industry analysis provides sources for industry trends and statistics, financial ratios, salary surveys, and more.

For guides to other industries, see our index.

Industry Analysis, Trends, Statistics, and Forecasts

Golf Courses & Country Clubs  (view report)
Golf Driving Ranges & Family Fun Centers  (view report)

Comprehensive market research reports provide in-depth industry analysis and five-year forecasts, with special focus on the underlying structure and external forces and relationships that affect industries and their performance. Report contents include:

  • Market size and characteristics
  • Key statistics and ratios
  • Current performance
  • Operating conditions
  • Competitive landscape
  • Major companies
  • Five-year growth forecast

Golf Business Magazine

Monthly trade journal features news and information for course owners and managers with a focus on a specific type of property in each issue (e.g., single-course, multi-course, private clubs, and resorts), and special features including the annual "Year in Review and the Look Ahead" (November/December issue) and "State of the Industry" (January issue) reports. Digital flipbook editions are available online.

First Research
Golf Courses

First Research profiles provide analysis, statistics, and forecasts for a wide range of industries, with content sections including industry overview, recent developments, issues and challenges, business trends and opportunities, leading companies, executive insights, financial benchmarking information, and 5-year revenue growth forecast. Profiles are updated monthly; sample report is available online.

GIE Media, Inc.
State of the Industry Report

Annual report provides information on current business conditions and concerns and expectations for the year ahead based on a survey of golf course superintendants, with topics addressed in the report including operating budget, capital budget, financial condition, profitability, maintenance crew staffing, personnel recruiting issues, and industry concerns. Current and prior reports are available free online.

Publications available from this trade association include:

U.S. Industry Overview
Annual industry overview report provides a summary snapshot of the industry's major top-line metrics, with information provided in the report including golfer participation trends, average number of rounds played per golfer, total number of rounds played, course supply and development, recent acquisitions, off-course retail store and equipment sales, economic indicators, and expectations for the year ahead.

Facilities in the U.S.
Annual facility report provides the total number of daily fee, municipal, resort, and private courses by state and region on a facility and 18-hole equivalent basis, and also provides detailed information on course openings, closings, and renovations, as well as the number of courses which are currently in planning and under construction. Summary results from the most recent report are available online.

Participation in the U.S.
Annual survey provides information on golf participation rates and number of rounds played annually
by gender, age, household income, and education level for all U.S. golfers, and includes additional breakdowns by golfer population segment (e.g., core golfers, occasional golfers, junior golfers, and beginning golfers) and geographic region. Summary data from the survey can be viewed free online.

Financial Benchmarking Data

Industry Financial Ratios
Golf Courses and Country Clubs  Search for "713910"

Five-year financial statement analysis includes income statements, balance sheets, and key financial ratios, with data available by sales size range on a national, state, and metro area level.

  • Income and expense detail in dollars and percentages
  • Balance sheets in dollars and percentages
  • Cash flow analysis
  • Liquidity and working capital ratios
  • Profitability and return on investment ratios
  • Asset turnover and efficiency ratios
  • Capital structure and debt service ratios

Operating and Financial Performance Profiles

Financial benchmarking report provides information on revenue, expenses, capital expenditures, and other measures for 18-hole-course facilities, with financial data broken out by facility type (e.g. public, private), climate region (e.g., Sunbelt, Frostbelt), and total annual revenues. National summary report which provides averages for daily fee and private 18-hole courses is available online with registration.

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Compensation Surveys

Compensation and Benefits Report

Comprehensive compensation and benefits survey provides total compensation data for 29 job titles, with survey data broken out by type of facility, gross revenue, and number of holes available and job titles covered in the survey including general manager, superintendant, sales and marketing director, membership director, head golf professional, accounting manager, and food and beverage manager.

Compensation and Benefits Report

Biennial compensation and benefits survey provides salary and hourly wage data for superintendants, assistant superintendants, equipment managers, and maintenance crew positions, with survey data broken out by facility type (e.g., private, daily fee, semi-private, and municipal), facility demographics, annual maintenance budget, GCSAA class (A, SM, CGCS), GCSAA chapter, state, and metro area.

Golf Course

Free online service provides salary, bonus, and hourly wage rate data for selected job positions in this sector, with job positions for which salary or hourly wage data is provided including general manager, head course superintendant, assistant course superintendant, head golf professional, assistant golf professional, food and beverage manager, groundskeeper, greenskeeper, and irrigation technician.

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Business Valuation Resources

Golf Property Analysis and Valuation: A Modern Approach
Larry A. Hirsch, MAI, Appraisal Institute, 2016

Comprehensive valuation guide explains how to analyze and value golf properties, with topics covered in this publication including types of courses, market analysis, course styles and layouts, other design considerations, ownership, management, and governance structures, approaches commonly used in valuing properties, unique valuation considerations, and common issues encountered by appraisers.

Golf Investor & Lender Survey

Annual survey provides information on investment and financing criteria for golf properties based on input from investors, brokers, lenders, and other survey participants, with measures covered in the survey including overall capitalization rate, terminal capitalization rate, net income multiplier, gross income multiplier, discount rate, income and expense growth rates, and broker sales commission.

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