Direct Golf’s revenues up after long drive into Scottish market

EXPANSION into Scotland helped the golfing equipment retail chain founded by professional player John Andrew make a record start to the year.

Direct Golf UK, which acquired the Scottish Golf Centre in January, said revenues jumped by 23 per cent for the first half of its financial year.

Andrew, who set up the firm in 1991 and also owns the famous Scottish club manufacturer John Letters, said: “2011 was a record year for our business, with both revenues and profits up, yet the start of 2012 indicates we’re on-course for another milestone in our 21st year of business.”

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The takeover of Scottish Golf Centre, bought from Mike Grubb who had owned the firm for 15 years, gave Andrew’s firm two stores north of the Border, in Dundee and Edinburgh. It has also opened shops in Cupar and Teesside this year, taking its portfolio of outlets to 21.

Andrew, now chairman of the company, added: “In 2010, we set out our aggressive growth plans for the business and since then have gone from strength to strength, adding nine new retail sites taking us from 12 to 21 stores and posted consecutive record financial years.”

In addition, the firm recently launched an improved online shopping experience as well as an online TV platform, Direct Golf TV, which consists of more than 300 product videos and reviews. That has helped to increase online sales by 15 per cent year-on-year, it added.

The distance-selling operation meant the firm already had a large customer base in Scotland, even before it acquired any physical outlets north of the Border.

The business employs some 250 staff, operates from a 75,000sq ft warehouse, and claims to be the leading multi-channel golf retailer in Europe.