The Real Estate Around London (REAL) property professionals networking seminar pitched up at newly refurbished Topgolf in Watford this week, bringing together commercial property experts in a very informal and friendly environment.
25 attendees from Herts, Beds and Bucks enjoyed a free breakfast and then an engaging talk by Dominic Taylor, UK National Director of Operations at Topgolf. Dominic explained how the Topgolf concept has provided a real leveller in the game of golf by making it accessible to people of all ages, genders and abilities. Indeed, 685,000 people played Topgolf in the UK last year.
The Topgolf complex, with its sophisticated layout and bar, as well as its range of games, has broadened the appeal of golf and reinvented the game and the driving range experience. Founded in 2000, Dominic explained that Topgolf has exploded in popularity with 3 sites in the UK and 22 in the U.S. currently, with further sites planned. The company has had to choose its sites very carefully, with over 30 variables including median income being considered. Each site, whether leased or purchased, needs land of at least 9-10 acres in size in geographic locations where there is a large population and easy motorway access. The business model established in the U.S. has been successfully exported to the UK.
The buildings used by Topgolf in the UK have either been built from scratch or renovated, as in the case of the Surrey complex which was previously a country club. Once permits have been secured, Dominic explained that the building process typically takes around 14 months to 2 years.
The marketing of Topgolf has also been carefully considered, with social media, and specifically celebrity endorsement of this channel, helping the concept to reach the younger audience being targeted. Indeed, 66% of players are in the 18-24 age bracket.
Dominic explained that growth in the U.S. is also set to soar, with 49 sites planned by 2017, including a new complex in the parking lot of the MGM Grand in Las Vegas!
This was a really interesting seminar in another unique Hertfordshire venue – not only did attendees find out more about how Topgolf has built a successful entertainment complex, but they also enjoyed a free game afterwards provided by the friendly Topgolf staff.
If you are interested in finding out more about our next REAL event, please email Melissa Menelaou for more information. These are free events hosted by Sherrards Solicitors, WMT Accountants and Lambert Smith Hampton – we are keen to grow the event attendance to maximise the benefits for all.