Wednesday November 29, 2023

PGA Tour Still Focused On PIF Negotiations As Deadline Nears

  • The PGA Tour has a Dec. 31 deadline to reach a deal with Saudi Arabia's Public Investment Fund.
  • Other American-based investors have shown interest in partnering with the PGA Tour.
John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports
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The PGA Tour is just over six weeks away from its deadline to reach a definitive agreement with Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund and the DP World Tour — and it says completing that deal is still the top priority.

In a memo to players, the PGA Tour policy board said its leaders “remain focused” on those negotiations. The memo said “progress has been deliberate,” but offered no update on potential timing for more news. 

If the deal is completed, the PIF would invest at least $1 billion — and potentially much more — into a new commercial entity called PGA Tour Enterprises, which would oversee the commercial business of the PGA Tour, DP World Tour, and LIV Golf. PGA Tour members will receive equity ownership in that company, it was also revealed on Tuesday.

Beyond the PIF update, the memo confirmed the PGA Tour has moved forward with representatives from “potential minority investors.” That terminology is particularly notable as rumors continue to swirl that those interested outside investors could potentially replace the PIF as a financial partner altogether. 

The PGA Tour had already reportedly narrowed that list down to five entities, including Boston Red Sox parent company Fenway Sports Group, as well as a company owned by Chelsea owner Todd Boehly. Fenway had previously confirmed its bid. Endeavor was once in discussions with the PGA Tour but is no longer in the running to invest.

NBA Assist?

In a surprising move, some prospective PGA Tour investors reportedly reached out to NBA commissioner Adam Silver about overseeing the future of professional golf, according to the New York Times. However, Silver isn’t interested, and no other details were forthcoming about the potential logistics.

Under the terms of the current framework agreement, PGA Tour commissioner Jay Monahan would be CEO of PGA Tour Enterprises, while PIF governor Yasir Al-Rumayyan would be the company’s chairman.

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