Behind the Golf Brand Podcast with Paul Liberatore

#76 - Izzo Golf: Jeff Gage & Aaron Frank

May 19, 2022 Paul Liberatore Season 3 Episode 76
Behind the Golf Brand Podcast with Paul Liberatore
#76 - Izzo Golf: Jeff Gage & Aaron Frank
Show Notes Transcript

We made it to Episode 76 of the Behind the Golf Brand Podcast.  In this week's episode, I interview my good friends Jeff Gage & Aaron Frank from IZZO Golf.  

IZZO  focus on just one thing – providing creative solutions to the problems that vex every golfer. From the original IZZO Dual Strap™ to their ultra light carry bags, cart bags, training aids, clubs and the NEW SWAMI 1500 golf GPS – IZZO is dedicated solely to making your golf game better and more enjoyable than ever before.

Prior to 1991, millions of golfers had to endure the pain of shouldering a bag on a single strap for 18 exhausting holes. Feeling their pain, T. J. Izzo sought to eliminate fatigue by creating the IZZO Dual Strap System™. This simple, brilliant innovation made walking the course easier, golf more enjoyable. In fact, Today, 100% of all carry bags use a dual strap, and millions of golfers are enjoying the walk thanks to IZZO innovation.

Now, charged by that spirit of innovation and a quest for quality, the IZZO Product Development and Quality Teams – all avid golfers – apply their unparalleled knowledge and passion for the game to deliver unique, superior quality products that can help every level of golfer.

IZZO. Ideas, innovation, and quality. For the game you love.

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Speaker 1:

Today we play golf.

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Let me show you how we do it in the pros.

Speaker 3:

Welcome to behind the golf brand podcast. I never missed with the seven nine a conversation with some of the most interesting innovators and entrepreneurs behind the biggest names in golf. My

Speaker 4:

Friends were the golf clubs. I lived on the golf course. I lived on the driving range

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From pro talk .

Speaker 5:

You should learn something from each and every single round

Speaker 3:

You play to fun from on and off the green.

Speaker 6:

Why would you play golf? You don't play it for money.

Speaker 3:

Just let me put the ball in a hole. This is behind the golf brand podcast with Paul liberatory .

Speaker 7:

What's up guys, Paul from golfers authority. Welcome to the behind the golf brand podcast. We are on episode 76 and I have ISO golf with us today. And I'm really super excited because I've known Aaron for since the beginning of my, of my adventure, essentially. And he's brought his friend, Jeff. Uh , so Aaron, Frank and Jeff G from IZO golf . And we're gonna talk about kind of how they grew and you guys already know IZO is. And if you, I mean, you happen who IZO is . So I'm really excited to have 'em on the show today. So welcome to the show.

Speaker 8:

Thanks for joining us.

Speaker 5:

Good to be here , Paul.

Speaker 7:

Yeah . Where is ISO located?

Speaker 5:

IZO is based in Rochester, New York, Western part of New York. About hour from Buffalo and between Buffalo and Syracuse geographically. It's let's just give you some perspective. I can drive to Toronto in about three hours, but New York city is about five hours. Yeah. Oh, wow. So it gives you some sense of kind of where we are and how big the state is. It's actually a shorter drive for us to go to Pittsburgh and not in Cleveland than it is New York city. So really? Wow. Well, when you say you live in New York, they immediately think you live in the city. Yeah. And , and we're, we're kind of wait , we're far removed from New York city.

Speaker 7:

Let me ask this question. Are you guys golf pros?

Speaker 5:

I like to think on golf was

Speaker 7:

Bag . Like you're a golf pro, but aren't you a

Speaker 5:

Golf pro? Yeah, we got plenty of golf bags , so yeah. Yeah , no, I mean , we're , we're obviously we're all avid golfers here. You know, if you walk down the hall here and talk to the folks, you know, the handicaps range from low single digit to, I think we got a guy who's like a 40 handicap. Now we have a couple guys,

Speaker 8:

We got a couple forties

Speaker 7:

I'm really afraid to get my handicap done. I'm gonna do it. I'm gonna do a whole YouTube series on my handicap. I'm let's be honest. Right. And S oh yeah , I shoot the eighties. I've been saying that for 25 years. Right . So like, I went and shot like three months ago and I was not in the eighties . Let's put it that way. Like , I was well over a hundred. I really kept my score. There was no cheating, right? Like, no. Oh yeah. Oh , lost balls. Drop another one or no, Mo nothing. And I was like, holy crap. I suck. I'm gonna ,

Speaker 5:

Well , listen, you know, golf's a great game, right? I mean, you can play . It's really the only sport , you know, if you love sports, if you're competitive or a played sports , doesn't matter, you know, whether it was high school or college. But when you think about it, golf's really the only game you can play until you die. <laugh> so, yeah . You know, as we , as we get on with our age, we can , uh , it's , it's great to be able to still play something competitively and of course have a great time doing it. So

Speaker 7:

What's the story with Iza . When did IZO start?

Speaker 5:

Well, Aaron , I'll take that. Yeah.

Speaker 8:

This one you're good. At

Speaker 5:

Definitely

Speaker 7:

Know when it happened.

Speaker 5:

My elevator pitch, I've been asked this question a thousand times. He's only

Speaker 8:

Given this speech about 15,000 times

Speaker 7:

Since I've been here . We , here we go. I'm

Speaker 5:

Gonna get the sales all . Let , lemme take a deep breath here. Cut me off. Pressure's on

Speaker 7:

Now coffee . Here we go .

Speaker 5:

<laugh> well, you had asked this earlier, Paul , so I'll mention that , uh , ISO is actually named for a gentleman. It name an actual person. It's not Tom. IZO from Michigan state, right? We're So a gentleman named TJ , IZO founded IZO golf in 1991, his inspiration. And what many people in golf circles know this story, but , uh, TJ invented and patented the dual strap for ,

Speaker 7:

Yeah . I didn't know that. So the strap, the actual strap says the actual

Speaker 5:

Strap that comes, you know , like a backpack

Speaker 7:

Everyone uses now. Yeah . That everyone uses everybody. If you carry , man , you have that.

Speaker 5:

Now you guys weren't even born yet, but I've heard . No, I'm just ,

Speaker 7:

You can see this great . 1991 . I was in like sixth grade dude.

Speaker 8:

Yeah . I was late seven years

Speaker 5:

Old. So, all right , sorry . You guys were still

Speaker 7:

Young. Jeff was already

Speaker 5:

1991. I was already outta college. So let's just so , but think about it . It's hard to believe, frankly, that prior to 1991, if you played golf and carried your bag, you had, you carried single

Speaker 7:

Strap , right? The heavy single strap and your arm would hurt by the end of the day. No ,

Speaker 5:

I remember , you know , you , yeah. And TJ, sure enough, like a lot of million dollar ideas, right. It starts with solving a problem. Right. So TJ who was an avid golfer, not a great golfer, probably midhan , you know , mid teen handicap. Um , he loved the game. He loved walking the course and carrying, and he had some back issues and he's one of those guys's like, you know, it's gotta be a better way, right. He'd walk off 18 and he'd feel a pain of, you know, cuz a golf bag full of clubs is what 40, you know , 45 pounds. And uh, you know, he tinkered, right. He was a kind of an engineer engineering background and he, and he created the first dual strap. Brilliant. And the idea of course behind the dual strap is that no different than, you know, we've all walked up the hill to , to our class in college with 30 pounds of books, you know, in a backpack and you know, hands free , number one, but also it balances the weight , uh , evenly on your back. So, you know, over 18 holes up and down Hills made a huge difference for him personally. Uh , and really, you know, it's one of those boy, why didn't I think of that moments ? And he took it to the extent of , um, patenting , the original dual strap . And it was a utility patent , which we know in the patent world, there's utility patents and then there's design patents. So design patents are easy to get around. Utility. Pat patents are pretty, pretty locked down. They're they're hard to step around. So long story short ,

Speaker 7:

It's more expensive of the patents too . Right? Excuse

Speaker 5:

What's

Speaker 7:

That it's the more expensive with the patent like utilities like , oh absolutely. Utilities like eight , nine grand. And if you want the full loan , like yeah ,

Speaker 5:

Yeah. But he got a global patent utility patent. And from then, I mean that really, that was the, you know , impetus behind ISOL golf being created, obviously named after TJ as though the inventor of the dual strap . So originally in 1991, we were a golf bag company. That's all we

Speaker 7:

Were . So you're making bags with the strap or is he just making the strap?

Speaker 5:

Well, we sold so basically back then, that was a long time ago . So we CA we had different revenue streams, all kind of centered around the dual strap because essentially you could not get because of the patent, if you were ma a manufacturer of a golf bag, you could not put a dual strap on the bag without either buying it from IO , licensing it from IO , uh , or

Speaker 7:

Smart , smart, smart, smart man. Yeah .

Speaker 5:

That

Speaker 7:

Revolut size golf bags essentially. Right? Yeah . Like it really

Speaker 5:

Did. Um, in fact, there's a quote from, I think the S G a and it talked about like the five most influential, influential inventions in golf that kind of changed the game. Like the , like the, the blo ball , uh , the metal wood , right. Which is like a , you know, and the dual strap is one of them it's actually considered, you know, cuz your point , Paul, it really dramatically changed the game at least from a playability standpoint. Um, and you know, as it relates to, you know, you know, the , the core of the game, you know, walking the course and carrying your back and um, and so, so the golf ISO golf was created in 1991. Um, the PGA showed that year, I think, or 1992, it won the product of the year at the PGA show. And from that point, it just , uh , so we were a golf bag company. Um, we were an OEM for a lot of the equipment brands cuz back then, like the Calloways the Titleist , the Tailormades bags , right . They didn't have bags, they

Speaker 7:

Had clubs. It was only like ping.

Speaker 5:

They were all about clubs. Yeah. So what they , we would be know . So really back then it was sun mountain , right? We all sun mountain invented the kickstand. Um, sun mountain in ISO were really the , the OEM , um, OEMs for the equipment brands. And then any bag that was manufactured, any stand bag or carry bag , you wouldn't, it would make no sense making one without a dual strap. So essentially 50 what 75 million sandbag later have had a , have had some have had a dual strap, whether in , uh , so that patent ran for 20 years, we were receiving , uh , we were collecting Royal checks every quarter for 20 years. Um , and of course we manufactured our own bags with the dual strap and that's really where it all started. Wow . And uh , I never know that . So TJ, TJ is , is a real person. I'm not sure where he is now, to be honest with you. Cause he's not part of the company, you

Speaker 7:

Don't know where he is at, come on, you know, where he is at. He's like probably like in his , uh , yacht in the Iani Carlo

Speaker 5:

<laugh> , but we're not a golf bed company anymore. I mean in nine , so 1999. So it was a golf bed company for the first decade throughout the nineties mm-hmm <affirmative> and then, you know, back then the golf industry was very fragmented. Um, and as we had mentioned, the , um, the big equipment brands were not, they didn't have golf or they did not have golf bags in house . They eventually, as the nineties progressed, the Calloways, the Tailormades et cetera . They saw golf bags instead of OEMing through NISO they brought that business in house . So obviously it changed our business quite a bit. We were kind of on our own. Now, granted, we were still collecting royalties on the strap , um, app . Um, but we discovered as we got into the late nineties that we weren't gonna survive as just a golf bag company. So anyway, the current owner of IO came in 1999, bought IO , acquired IO from TJ IO . So now TJ's out of the business and smartly , uh , the current owner saw kind of the consolidation of the industry and he went out and he bought a training company, training aid company. He bought a big accessory company and he rolled them all under the IZO golf umbrella. So since 1999, we are well beyond golf bags . We are one of the biggest golf accessory companies in the world. As we sit here today,

Speaker 7:

You really are. And I always forget that because like, I think of you as the GPS stuff, because that's how I , that's how I met you guys. Right? Yeah . I forget, like I was, when you were talking, I was like , actually I went to your website and I was like, oh my God. Right? Oh yeah, it's right . Like, you know, like looking at the nets and the chipping aids and I'm like, oh my God, forgot of all this stuff. Like, just because I just remember you as how I entered. Does that make sense? Um, and so it's like, I mean, you guys are a huge training training company and accessories , right? I mean yep .

Speaker 8:

Yeah . See, there it goes my leg .

Speaker 7:

That's cool. I like , there you go

Speaker 8:

Go . No more glare. So

Speaker 7:

Somebody's not freezing up. So

Speaker 8:

Every now and again, I gotta, you know , wave my arms behind my computer.

Speaker 7:

That happened to me the other night. I'm gonna tell this bad story about me. We went to this restaurant like three nights ago and like I was in the bathroom and like making business and like they had those light , same thing , the center , but it's like kind a two minute timer and I'm in there. I goes , freaking pitch black in there. And I was like, now what do you do? Right. You get up. So going, like, that's what I had to do actually, actually just my arm. That was , I was , I was like, you know, some person's gonna walk in and is gonna meet <laugh> me going like this anyways. Um,

Speaker 5:

But yeah, you mentioned training. So we , uh , really in the , in the decade , the two thousands, we were golf bags was maybe 5% of our business. You know , a lot of people

Speaker 7:

Like after the patent or you guys just not making bags,

Speaker 5:

No, still, still collecting royalty. So number 20 years. So we were collecting royalty checks up until 2011, but between the year 2000 and you know, we really, a lot of people kind of knew of us more about golf bags because of the heritage, but we really didn't do a lot of golf bags in the two thousands. Now in the last decade, we've , uh , we've kind of gotten back pretty big into the golf bag world, you know, because , um, you know , we, we had some brand equity in golf bags because of the dual strap and we really were taking advantage of it. Now we were diversifying as a company and be , and growing into one of the biggest golf accessory companies in the world and golf bags was just a , you know, just a , you know , subcategory of something much bigger. Um, but you mentioned training, like we're probably the number one manufacturer of hitting net. Um ,

Speaker 7:

I surprised

Speaker 5:

And then training aids . So we're pretty big on the training side, we have some of the best selling training aids of all time.

Speaker 7:

Like which one flat ball ,

Speaker 5:

The flat balls one , the smooth swing, smooth swing , the smooth swing is coming mean worldwide. Yeah . You know, and that's, you know , it's a very simple, intuitive training aid . I mean the thing retails for, you know , 15 to $20 ,

Speaker 7:

15 bucks on your website.

Speaker 5:

Yeah. You know, I think with

Speaker 8:

Use

Speaker 5:

Yeah . Well, you know , what it does is that it goes to show you, you don't have, you know , some of these training aids , you know , these info commercials that these training aids are a hundred dollars, $150 . They're very complicated. Um, I

Speaker 7:

$500 ones, dude. I was like, you're five for training . Like you serious and oh , that's how you tech . And I would , I'm like when I would never wear that. Right . And then like it's $500, like , come on. Who's who buys that?

Speaker 8:

Yeah . They're already used, you don't even know what

Speaker 7:

To do , like your arms like this in it. Right . And you're like, okay , so you do it. And it's like, why would I spend $500 to

Speaker 5:

Do that? Well, back to inventors, I mean, golf has golf is full of inventors and these are guys, they all think they have the next million dollar idea now because of who we are. And because of our distribution globally, every inventor, we , our phones ring off the hook. They all come to us cause they wanna sell us on the idea. You know, we can brand it under calorie or odysey because of our Licens licensing relationship with them, or we can do at is O and we, frankly, the ones that come to us and they're , they're very expensive or they're very complicated. They're not intuitive. We don't even bother with , I ,

Speaker 7:

I gotta tell you this story. Honestly, I should talk to my dad, you know, how I got into this, like 20 years ago, my dad had a training aid . Right. And like, it's still around, it's called <inaudible> . And I was like, right outta college. And I had, I was in flight school. He used to be a pilot. Right. So I didn't have a job. And he's like, Hey, why don't you help me market this? And so like, I didn't know, like my dad was not, my dad was a tinkerer. Right. He got the patent , he did the whole thing. He'd patented this thing, but it's like, where's the biggest pain point, right. When you en golf , uh , bringing it to market, right. Like , yeah, you can stuff , but like , will it sell? And this is like 2000. So this is like no internet days, right? Like there was , yeah . So, you know, he paid me and what I did, honestly , it's my first taste of the industry , um, is I would write letters to all the, all the , um, magazines. Right. I'd go to the grocery store, get the magazines, go to the equipment section, find out who the guy was, go to the back of it, like figure out what their address was or the beginning of it. And I would run , send letters and I would just be like, Hey, then I , and then I would , and then within two years we got into like 20 magazines, which was like, and there's like , and I had fun with it. Right . I didn't care . But like, I know what you're saying, because like I've taught , I know a lot of training aid people let's call it. And it's like, it's always the same story. Right. And they think, oh , I'm gonna go to the PGA show and I'm gonna show my thing and I'm gonna spend $7,000 for a booth and I'm gonna have a million sales and then come home. And now they're out seven throughout 10 grand. Now they didn't sell anything. And then right back where they started, right. Like , oh no, no,

Speaker 5:

That's , it happens. It , it happens all the

Speaker 7:

Time, all the time, all the time. And my dad, you know why I know that cause I have my dad. Right. And so then like , I mean , I saw that in 2001, right. He goes to PGA show and he didn't sell anything. Right. Like, and so I , it's really interesting to tell that story cause I'm like , like dad, I could , I could totally see that, you know, like, and his training aid is cool and actually does work. It's only 20 bucks.

Speaker 5:

That's right. Yeah. And we find that the best selling training games are the ones that are number one, affordable. Yeah . And number two, you know, very intuitive and very simple. I mean, they, they basically reinforce a very kind of a fundamental aspect , a part

Speaker 7:

Of the , whatever you're trying to learn.

Speaker 5:

Right . Yeah. Like the golf swing, like the smooth swing is all about a one piece takeaway . Yep . Which is a fundamental, I don't care what your handicap is and that's the beauty of a training like that. And the reason we sell so many every year is because whether you're a one handicap or a 30 handicap, this is a valuable tool when you're on the range and you can, it's, you know, it's, it's a Nere band . You could put in your golf bag, not even know it's there. So every time you're on the range, you can pull it out. And it just helps reinforce the fundamental part of the swing. And certainly for juniors or beginners , um , you know, it , it , it obviously applies yeah .

Speaker 7:

Teaching , teaching somebody like the feel, right. What does it really feel like when , without instructor holding your arms together and going this or something,

Speaker 5:

You know? And , and , you know, like you've heard like , uh , um , if there's many videos on YouTube and golf instruction where they put two towels under their armpits, you know? Yeah . <laugh> and, and basically that's what it does. It , it does the same thing, but it's, it's, you know, instead of taking two towels and, you know, it's really designed for that purpose, no different than we, we sell a wedge of power platform and it's all about weight transfer, you know , distribution. And what you do is you're basically, you know, when you set up to hit a golf ball, you're standing on a , a wedge , uh , on your back foot, which keeps your weight centered. And so you eliminate the swing . And again, you know, many golf instructors that they'll tell a student to step on a golf ball, you know, and all we did is kind of take something that's very intuitive and very basic and create a , you know , commercialize it, create a product retails for again, 1999. And in that stuff , uh , we do very well with those eighties, those kind of training very well.

Speaker 7:

So like the breadth of what you guys do is big. Right. I mean, I'm not trying to sound ignorant, right. Like, oh yeah. But like, I've , there's so many training aids you guys sell. Right. You would never think, oh , it's an ISO thing. That's ISO thing. And it's like, you see all these knockoffs, right? Like whatever the training is , knockoff of is , but it's like, really ? That was your product. It just, I mean , you see it all the time, but it's like, you guys have the chipping. I know you have the chipping aid , you have the putting greens, you have the hitting net. I , I knew you guys had a lot of hitting nets. I already knew that. And like, you're well respected for the hitting nets, but like , I didn't realize the breath of how many you make. Right. And like size, and then the type that has like the picture, like in the net. So you kind feel like true views . Brilliant. Right. And it's an upcharge, brilliant. Like, no one's into a net in their backyard . Like , like a golf course I'll pay the extra money. No problem. Right. Like so smart.

Speaker 5:

Well, that's that , that true view , uh , we call a true view . Um , it's a D sub printed, essentially. You're kind of, it's not even a net per se. We call it a hitting net , uh , because for lack of a better term, but it's almost like hitting into a simulator screen.

Speaker 7:

Oh . Like taking material like that.

Speaker 5:

Yeah. That's the material

Speaker 7:

Soft.

Speaker 5:

The technology allows you . Yeah. You print this dye sub printed image, very high res image . And the , of course the theory there is that when you're practicing, you're focusing on an actual target versus getting into a net . So that's, what's cool about that's relatively new. That's only been out funny , been out a year, maybe a couple years. Not even yet , but out . So I

Speaker 7:

Even know you did that, like yeah. That's so, okay. You have the hitting nets, which are sick and you have the training aids . And then when did you, so like what , so in 2000 in the two thousands, right. You guys started diversifying. It sounds like, right. Because you're kind of like, well, we have this, it's gonna run out in X amount of years. We need to start expanding what we're doing, our offerings and start bringing in other products. Right. And probably back then, no one was really doing it anyways. I mean, a consolidator of training aids, like who does that? Yeah . I only know one company that's training aids.com , but they're a wholesale. I mean, they sell, right. It's not like they're a manufacturer. Right. Or whatever it is . Um ,

Speaker 5:

Well, it's one of the reasons why we have such , uh , I mean, we have relationships with kind of the who's who of sporting good golf specialty retail. So the biggest retailers in the country, if not alone , what's focusing on the us . So it's the , you know, Walmart target Amazon, obviously with Dick sporting goods, golf , galaxy, PJ tour , you know, we Arene supplier for all the big needs in retail, mainly because you know, a lot of these big retailers, you know , they don't, they wanna minimize the number of vendors they deal with. It's just , it's too much to have one off vendors for one skew

Speaker 7:

For one product they make, right. Like , oh, you make the X okay. Well account for one guy buy from

Speaker 5:

A dozen people. Yeah . Yeah . So it' your , to your point by consolidating back in the early two thousands, by buying these other companies and then consolidating them under one brand, we became a much bigger company. We now, you know, basically we do everything Paul, other than clubs involved and apparel, like we don't do clubs. Balls are apparel. Well ,

Speaker 7:

Everyone's doing balls now. Yeah . Yeah . Everybody and apparel five years. Right. Let's be honest. And then like apparel, that's a fulltime job in itself. Right. Because like trends it's so niche. What's cool. And blah, blah, blah. And like a ton of capital on stuff that it might never sell. Right. Yeah. And like, I mean , I work a lot with apparel brands and it's , I would, I'll tell you this story about apparel. I was like, okay, I'm gonna do , I'm gonna do some like sweatshirts or something for the brand . So I like started doing apparel and I like, you know, figure out how to do it, get us , you know, I'm not buying 10,000 things. Right. But then like a year ago , um , I worked with the guys from Deborah and I was over their office. Cause they were in Tempe and I walk in and I'm like, holy crap. Like, it was really , its really nice. Right. And I'm like, now this is a real apparel brand. Right. Like you see, 'em looking at fabrics and design. I'm like, I might even doing that. I'm just doing some , some screen printing. Right. Like I'll never be able to do that. I , I don't even, I don't even have a background in that. And it's like, yeah, I'm not gonna do apparel . Like

Speaker 5:

I'll do like , no , you gotta be all in.

Speaker 7:

Yeah. It's kind like you have to be all in . Right. And you have to kind of know like what trends doing and why you're doing it and

Speaker 5:

What , well, even operationally operationally the problem, the challenge with the per and footwear is you have sizes, right? So you gotta like, you know, it's , that's a very challenging business and you better be really good at, that's why the best apparel brands in the world, that's all they do is apparel.

Speaker 7:

And they're two years out or a year and a half out when they're buying, they already figured you can't figure that out. Like the moment before. Right? Yeah . Like , um , well I also think that too of golf clubs , like people think glove gloves are an easy market. No dude there's like 20 fricking sizes, right? Like yeah . How many are you gonna buy and what they don't really like some , you know, it's like, yeah , it's just , yeah. That's

Speaker 5:

Not a thing . So yeah. Golf, gloves and stuff . So we we've always avoided that. Uh , only because you know, when you think about the biggest brands in golf, they tend to be the equipment brands. Right. So we all know Calloway title is tailormade. Yeah . Um, you know, even then they they're all about clubs and balls now of course they do have accessory, but they dabble in that. In fact that's why they go to you. We have the , well , that's why we have the licensing array , uh , relationship with Calloway , which

Speaker 7:

What's Callway license from you. What products the ,

Speaker 5:

Is it basically , uh , have they have a little , well, we, it started out as an acronym. We called it tag. We still call tag, what does that really mean? It's training accessories and gifts . So Callway uh , even though technically speaking, we compete with callate , right? I mean they do their own golf bags. We , we do

Speaker 7:

Golf and , but you don't right. Kind of .

Speaker 5:

Yeah . But we don't. Yeah. I mean , right . Well they're more premium and again, they're more about clubs and balls, but you know what, like any licensee, what we do is we take a great brand like Callway and Odyssey, by the way. And we extended into categories that certainly they could do themselves, but they don't wanna dilute. If you start diluting your , your expertise, Then , then your , your clubs and your ball stuff . Right? Yeah . So you don't want that to happen. And

Speaker 7:

Your bread and bugs are falling apart. Cause your driving stuff that you shouldn't be doing.

Speaker 5:

So we've, we've been selling both the way we kind of position Callway and ISO is cattle away . It's kind of a Cadillac, Chevy approach. Right. It's kind of like you're

Speaker 7:

The Cadillac .

Speaker 5:

Yeah . It's a , Chevy's gonna get you from point a to point B no different than a Cadillac, but it doesn't have all the bells and whistles. Right . So Calloway is more premium. We, we don't just slap, we don't just take an ISSO product and slap the Calloway brand on it and charge everyone more. Um , we do , um, we do distinctly make, so like a retriever of all things, you know, the Calloway retriever, it's probably the number one side .

Speaker 7:

I know exactly what you're talking about.

Speaker 5:

Yeah . Yeah . We call it the 15th club retriever. Yeah . Uh , cuz it has a head cover. So it looks like the 15 it's like

Speaker 7:

50 bucks, right?

Speaker 5:

It's like, yeah. They're $50 .

Speaker 7:

Yeah. I know that . What you're talking about, there's a blue head cover on it.

Speaker 5:

Yep . We sell

Speaker 8:

One of the best sellers

Speaker 5:

For real . It's amazing. How many of those reach ? I mean I never, I , I remember when we first came out with it, this is it's back in 2007 , we came out with that product and back then it was like 39 99 . And you know, every other retriever in the market was 15 bucks or less. And I remember saying, this is gonna , this isn't gonna work <laugh> and uh , you know what, it's a Testament to the brand. It's a Testament to the fact that we did create a Cadillac of retrievers. I mean, from a construction standpoint, we have things that it's , it's a weapon .

Speaker 7:

Yeah . It looks nice. It's like people don't care about the price. Like I don't know. It's no , here's a funny story. My dad used to always say, when I was a kid, he's like, oh, you always want the Cadillac version of everything. I don't know who that meant. Right . Right . I was like , and then I was like, I was like, yeah, cause I don't want the best thing. If it breaks, I just paid the most money. I know it's not gonna break. Right .

Speaker 5:

Right . Well, you know, what's funny is uh , hitting nets is a good example. We oh yeah . Hitting , trust me with hitting nets. You get what you paid for. Yes . Okay . So you could find hitting nets, any hitting net that retails for under hundred dollars. I would run away from it only because the

Speaker 7:

Ball's go right through it.

Speaker 5:

Oh yeah . They go right through it and you know , you got it outside and your neighbor's kids are playing in the backyard and you put a ball, you know, you're hitting a ball 150 miles an hour through that net. And uh , there's something on the other side. I mean, that's the , you know , so you

Speaker 7:

Have , especially the things you guys are doing, you have to stand behind. Right. Like our net is not gonna do that. Right. Because literally you're making a safety, a safety thing and it's like, yeah . It's like, you're not messing around.

Speaker 8:

Oh our QC, team's got a , uh , golf ball launcher that , uh , launches golf balls up to 200 miles an hour into this net. And we , you know , just to make sure we're not, <laugh> producing products in our ,

Speaker 7:

That makes sense. I didn't think about that, but yeah. I mean,

Speaker 5:

Well, you know, and it's a , it's a pay me now , ator thing, you know, a lot of people get cheap with the hitting net once and then they, you know, it breaks or the ball flies through it. Yeah . And then they come back and they, they spend, you know, double the price, but they get something that's durable and it's gonna last. So

Speaker 7:

See, I like , I just think it's so cool. Like I honestly thought, cause I mean, I was like, we're talk about, I haven't even gotten to it yet, but I was like, we're talk about the IZO Swami and this the , you know, like the stuff and blah, blah, blah. And I like totally like forgot. Right? Like, I mean, until you started talking about it and I started looking at , I was like, oh, that's right. That they have a lot of stuff. And then I don't really , I didn't realize how big of a company you really are. Right? Like how many things you actually do, the relationships you have with Callway . I didn't know that. I didn't even , I had no idea, honestly, like it's not my business. I didn't know. You made that, that IM at the , uh , what are I claims called the ball picker up thing

Speaker 5:

15 .

Speaker 7:

Yeah .

Speaker 5:

Club . Well , we do well , we think about it as a licensee of Callway if we're doing it right. The consumer doesn't know it's ISO . Right . You

Speaker 7:

Know , I would never know that,

Speaker 5:

You know, they they're buying a Callway product it's and we, so we take that very seriously because Callway is a premium brand. I mean , we all know they sell $500 drivers and they're great drivers mm-hmm <affirmative> but, and when you're selling a $50 retriever, it better be good. It has to represent the brand .

Speaker 7:

Right . Pull it out. And it falls apart. Cause people are like this piece of crap and then have a picture of it . And then, and that is like , they're probably the number one selling retriever. I bet you on Amazon. I bet .

Speaker 5:

Oh definitely.

Speaker 7:

It is . Yeah .

Speaker 5:

And you can look at all the reviews. I mean, those reviews speak for itself. I mean, I can't and

Speaker 7:

You only need one and you only one in your bag for your entire career of golf. Right. It's not like gonna outgrow it. And I don't know , it's it's kinda like that balance, right? Like you can go cheap and people might buy it, but then you might go expensive. And then most people, and especially in golf, people are gonna buy the nicer item. Right? Oh ,

Speaker 5:

Well, you know what it is is if you read reviews, people are like, I paid for this with the 20 Titleist provs I found <laugh> you possib hilarious. Well, you know, it's funny. It's brilliant. I don't know who to get credit to. It's not me. Um,

Speaker 7:

Give to Aaron . It

Speaker 8:

It's not me either. Trust me <laugh>

Speaker 5:

But we created that we, someone had the idea. We were the first to put a head cover on a recruit .

Speaker 7:

Yeah. Cause it's it's little junky when you have like beat up nasty and it has like MOS and crap all over it

Speaker 5:

When

Speaker 7:

You're scraping it. Oh , I know my bad looks like that. Yeah . You know, like it's dried up like hair looks what it looks like on it .

Speaker 5:

Yeah. So the head cover really trust me. It was a brilliant idea because now you, cuz people don't want to be embarrassed carrying

Speaker 7:

Around. Yeah. Cause you're that guy. Oh, we got that guy who has , he's been picking up ball in the lake cuz he walked by it.

Speaker 8:

Yeah. I'm playing with my uncle and I go, here we go. We're gonna be searching in the river for the next five hours.

Speaker 7:

My

Speaker 5:

Dad's so that , you know , and of course, as you had mentioned , you know , we , we were the first to do that. There's been copycat since, you know, so you know , which I guess that's a good form of flag . Lemme

Speaker 7:

Ask this question. Like , would you patent, did you patent that? I mean that'smething, that's patentable, right? I don't , yeah . I don't see how to be patentable because like, I mean you can make it stronger. I don't really know. Maybe,

Speaker 5:

You know, it's a great question. I mean the idea of

Speaker 7:

No , no ,

Speaker 5:

But you know , the problem is can you get, we mentioned patents earlier, if you, if you can't, if it doesn't merit a utility patent, it's not getting , uh , because design patents can be stepped around very easily. So I don't know if you can , um, I don't know if you can cause

Speaker 7:

A key word is what it has to be. Uh oh, not intuitive has to be , um , Like

Speaker 5:

Yeah , yeah.

Speaker 7:

Whatever the big word is. Meaning like it has to be different where like it hasn't existed before and it's that's

Speaker 5:

Right.

Speaker 7:

Yeah. I can hear the

Speaker 5:

Word of it . Like it's pretty hard getting utility patent . That's a hard thing to get. Um, you know, you have to

Speaker 7:

Prove it's expensive, right? You're talking 20, $60,000, right? Like you got a lot of ball retrievers to get that return of investment and you know, it's gonna get knocked off in China in like two seconds. So it's like, what's the point? Like I think it's, it comes down to the race, right? Like the race to market and the race to being established in the marketplace that like, oh, this is a really good item because somebody come up with some , knock off one , that's half the price, but like you're not gonna buy it because it has no reviews and it looks like crap and that's exact same thing. It's like, you get to pay for .

Speaker 5:

Well, that's where, and that's where the brand does help obviously, because , uh, you know , um, that in golf, golf is a very brand driven game like we discussed earlier. So , um, but to clarify Paul, like on what we do, you know that the easiest way, cuz I get people at like, what do you guys do? You know? So I , everything , the easiest way to describe it is I tell people, I say , you go to a golf course, you're getting ready to tee off. Everyone's gathering around the practice screen . There's golf bags everywhere. Right? Whether they're sitting on a cart or you know, sitting on a push cart or someone's carrying. And I tell people, I said the easiest way for me to tell you kind of what we do is walk up to any golf bag you see other than the clubs and the balls that are in that bag. We do everything else. So the golf bag, the golf towel , the retriever, the ball markers, the tea

Speaker 7:

Brush, the

Speaker 5:

Tea repair to the brush.

Speaker 7:

Um ,

Speaker 5:

So basically I tell people, any golf bag, reach , reach in all the pockets, pull everything out. That's what we do. <laugh> so smart .

Speaker 7:

I call it the smalls, right? Like that is , that's the smalls in golf, which is, I feel very lucrative because it's like, they're inexpensive quote unquote . Right. Everybody needs it. And you go through it right over time. Yeah . And what I feel has differentiated you, and this is , this is before we start talking today is I look at your GPS stuff. Right. Because it's inexpensive in comparison to like all the big, the ones that are like four times the price . Right. It's really good. And everyone , like I told you , my dad stole mine. Right. And I even know like people who have like, there's a , guy's in chat right now, Allison . Right. E's like, oh, you know , he has a swarmy sport and he loves it. Right. It's like, I haven't heard anybody talk bad about IZO right. Like , oh that thing's a piece of. I never heard anybody say that. Right. It's always like, I mean , my like literally my dad took it. Right. So like , I don't have like anything that Aaron gave me. Right. My dad, I'm gonna try that. And then I don't have it. And that was like two years ago.

Speaker 5:

Yeah. No, that's a , that's

Speaker 7:

Like , it's a Testament to what you guys make. Right. Because it's like, you make it affordable and you , you break, it makes it easier for new golfers or any golfer really to barrier of entry to buy that unit. Right. Yeah . But it's still a very good unit. They don't need to buy the $500 one because it does the same DM thing. Right? Yeah . Like,

Speaker 5:

And well, that was our , that was our effort up front . And we jumped into the GPS world. When

Speaker 7:

That, when did you guys start

Speaker 5:

Doing that ? Like 2007 or eight. And that's what you ,

Speaker 7:

This is when super expensive back then.

Speaker 5:

Yeah. This is when it was really sky Cady . Nothing else. Yep . And a sky Cady , like any new technology were very expensive. They were 300, $400 for a sky Cady . And we , uh, this category was emerging. Um, you know, we, we had, it was a good fit for us, but we had never done it before. So we could have partnered with someone like, no , we're gonna , we're gonna organically build out our own , um , line of GPS units since your point, Paul , um , we made a decision early on to cut the price in half . Like we're like, this is ridiculous. So we , you know, we , we , you know , we can play at the high end if you want. And then you build in

Speaker 8:

Point .

Speaker 5:

So we were the first to market with a GPS unit back then that was under a hundred dollars really. And um , now, you know, time has gone on inflation, whatever. So now like our, you know, we sell , we have a range of Swami . We call Swami , Swami , nose , all kind of thing. And know where

Speaker 7:

It came from. Is that what it came from?

Speaker 5:

<laugh> yeah. Yeah .

Speaker 7:

That's smart. Yeah . I was see like, IZO you like, what the hell does that mean? Right. Where do they come with that? And then it like, I mean offense and then it's like swamping and then you think about, oh , it's really cool. Oh, that's really cool. Right. Love this about the

Speaker 5:

Show. Well , I , the thing is , ISO's got a , ISO's got a catch, but it's , it is a real guy. <laugh>

Speaker 7:

Well , the real guy now I thought IZO was like, I don't know what I thought IO was. Cause it's not common. You know what I'm saying? Like , yeah . I had no idea. Yeah . But then even like the name, swaping like, how the hell they come ? Why did they choose Swee ? Right.

Speaker 5:

Like , well, again, it was like Swee says, right? Like , and then , you know , your distance Swee says, here's your distance to the front of the green .

Speaker 7:

Oh my God . That was a four generation. But there should be a Saturday or , uh , what was it called ? Johnny. Johnny Carson. <laugh>

Speaker 5:

Oh yeah . Oh ,

Speaker 7:

Did that Swee ? Was that Swami like that?

Speaker 5:

Yeah . Well he , I don't think he was swam , know a was

Speaker 7:

Call . There was something like that. Oh , he had the card on his head. He'd be like,

Speaker 5:

Yeah, no, he would , he would give you the answer and then , and then ask the

Speaker 7:

Question . Oh yeah , yeah ,

Speaker 8:

Yeah . That's what was it ?

Speaker 5:

Ed man would go. Huh ?

Speaker 7:

That's all he would . That's all I would do . And then he'd give like money away once a year on the commercial for , uh , publishers, publishers,

Speaker 5:

Clearinghouse.

Speaker 8:

Yeah . <laugh>

Speaker 5:

So , but I mean, we've been in the GPS. We've been in the GPS business since 2008 . Right. We're 2022 . We sell pro I mean we sold

Speaker 7:

A bazillion of them . How much ? Hundred.

Speaker 5:

Yeah . I think hundreds we're in the hundreds of thousands of units , uh , worldwide. Um, again, we do sell wide .

Speaker 7:

It's strong. It works really well. And it's affordable, right? Like , yep . You've made the perfect product. Right? Like, and it's a Testament to the brand that you guys did that and you had different price points. Right? So it's like the smaller one had a bigger one. Yep . Like this . So what's the big one called that's what's

Speaker 5:

It's called the Swami 6,000. See our original unit, you know , how they , uh , companies use model numbers and they progress. Right. So our first unit was called the Swami 1500. We still get calls on that. We still get , that was back late . And so

Speaker 7:

We probably has one and they broke. They still do for 15 years. Nope .

Speaker 5:

They still do <laugh> so, you know, you get better as you got . Right. So sawmy 1500. Then there was a Swami 3000. Then there was a Swami 4,000, then the 4,000 plus and the 5,000, then the 6,000. So we're in the 6,000 right now. Uh , it's a handheld unit. It's got a magnet built in, so it could sit what I like about it . I love the magnets built in because if you're in a ,

Speaker 7:

Cart's the future of golf, I'm just telling me right now . No , it really,

Speaker 5:

So you don't wanna it's and it , you know , it auto, you know , it has all the same features that a $300 garment has to be Frank , um , Aaron , Frank, or to , but for half the cost, that's why I'm here, You know , and listen, nothing against, I mean the garments and the push nails of the world. I mean, they , they have established brands. They're premium. Fine .

Speaker 7:

Yeah . I was looking Amazon last night. I was going through products. Right. And I was looking for products I didn't wanna buy. And like was like Bushnell has like a $500 range finder. And I'm like, what the hell is that thing? Do that's what word ? $500. Like, that's like some per , like in my mind, that's an ivory tower decision, right? Like, okay. Somebody will buy it. No, they won't buy it. I can tell you right now, they're not gonna buy it . Right . I mean, if you are, you're that guy, first of all, I'm not gonna look at your bag and be like, oh, is that the Bush? No one that's $500 . Like , I mean

Speaker 5:

The stupid, well, we have the , we have the number one sounding wave on Amazon now too. It's under , it's under the Callway brand retail .

Speaker 7:

That Callway laser. Yep . Oh . That's us like the one like white and bread and brown or whatever. Yeah . What we're about. I know exactly. That's one you're talking about.

Speaker 5:

It's crazy . It's called the 300 pro

Speaker 7:

It's been around forever. Right? Like it's like, well ,

Speaker 5:

We used to be in line . Right . And then as we built out our inline range, you know , Cal Calloway obviously wants they're more to authentic and they want, you know , the higher end. And we said , uh , you know, we have a good relationship with Amazon and

Speaker 7:

Holy crap , you , I didn't know . This is your

Speaker 5:

Talking . Yeah . So they were like, they're like, you know, can you guys, you know , do a calorie branded unit for 1 99? And I'm like, I think we can anyway. So we , uh , that is the number one selling laser on Amazon right

Speaker 7:

Now. 6,099 reviews. You guys. Yep .

Speaker 5:

There you go.

Speaker 7:

And it's four and a half stars . Yeah . Like at 1 99 . Yeah . Let's let's , let's break these back a second. Why is it working? Well, it says Callway on it. Right? So it's easy . You win right there. It's under $200 . So it's like, you've already sold the person . So it's a Callaway, it's under 200 bucks. So it's like Very even entry for everybody else. Who's trying to compete with you. Who's a no name brand good luck. Now it's a price. Now it's a price game. Right. But it's like, yep . Okay. Almost a hundred dollars that literal just private piece of crap. Right. Like,

Speaker 5:

And by the way, and the most important part is it works like a three, $400 later . Yeah . That's the best part . Yep .

Speaker 7:

Yep . Okay . That's a feature.

Speaker 5:

Yeah. It's got , it's got all the feature. The optics is , I mean, trust me, there is an, there always is an element of, of , you know , price point is reflective of the cost to manufacture. Right. I mean that , you know, and, and obviously as you start getting cheaper in your manufacturing, you're using less quality materials and , and whatever. So, you know , usually the price point reflects, you know, the, the , the quality and the value, but this is a great, and the reason why this does so well, I had no idea , uh , is that at 1 99? Um, you're getting a $400 laser. Yeah. And that's, I mean, so, but you

Speaker 7:

Micro laser, do you? I don't think you do

Speaker 5:

Right. Well, we , yeah , we manufacture . We don't do under ISO .

Speaker 7:

No, that is your is oh one quote unquote .

Speaker 5:

Well, the , the nature of our licensing arrangement with Calloway is , you know, they're , they're more to , they're a , to authentic brand , right. Because of their obvious equipment and balls and , and , you know, Xander haw , John Ram , and you know, all the , all the , the names

Speaker 7:

Suck .

Speaker 5:

Yeah . And when you think about, when you think about to authentic, you like you , like on a PJ tour event , even a practice round, you'll never see a GPS unit, but you'll see plenty of lasers. Right. So we, we do all our lasers under Calloway , and then we do all our GPS under ISSO that that's , that's how it's distinct. Oh, we don't, we don't

Speaker 7:

That that's such a , you got your agreement, right? Like we're not gonna , you're not gonna make a Callway GPS unit. You could , you probably sell you probably double the price and people would probably buy it . Cause it paid Callway on it, but it's like, yeah , it's it's at this. Yeah. You're not doing that now.

Speaker 5:

Yeah. So we, we do, we manage the brands, very distinctively. You know, we , we , if the products are set , the products are distinct. Uh , you know, we honor the Callaway brand because of the premium nature of it. And so, and we create our products and they , they of course, because it is their brand, they have to approve every product that goes to market. And they're very particular about where their brand is placed for obvious reason . So , um, they kick the tires and everything we, we launch, but we, you know, on the , on the back end , we manufac , we do everything. We , we do manufacture, we bring it to market. Uh , we distribute it worldwide. Um, and so that, that relationship has been very good for, for both parties.

Speaker 7:

So how long had that relationship with cowboy been

Speaker 5:

2007 is when it started. Oh , crap . So , yeah.

Speaker 7:

So, so you guys kind of grew together essentially, right? I mean, they were already in a certain way, but I mean like, yeah , this last ,

Speaker 5:

I mean, yeah . So we , we have a , we have a very good partnership with that . They're great people to work with and, and they've got a great brand and we , we have to respect that, you know, we have to make sure we represent that brand well, yeah, they've done a great job over

Speaker 7:

The last 10 years. It's , you know , it's a Testament too, cause the product, because you could make that range fund or slack cows label on itself for 1 99 and it could have no reviews because it could be crap. Right, right. So it still has to be good. You know, it's not like, oh, it's automatic win for you. Or the , you know, has a name on it looks pretty

Speaker 5:

Right. And listen, we saw a $450 . Callway laser too. And by the way, it , it is better than the 1 99 version. But again, it's reflective of, of the prices. That's .

Speaker 7:

So that's only taught out was the 300 , which is 1 99. What's the more expensive one.

Speaker 5:

Well, there's a tour S sometimes the prices on get a little bit outta whack , but

Speaker 8:

400 S now. But yeah .

Speaker 5:

Do we have some new models coming out this spring? Oh , really? Under the Callway brand, we have a new tour model coming out. So

Speaker 8:

We have the easy scan as well. That one's kind of innovative if you will .

Speaker 7:

Did you guys make that 200 series two for Calloway ? Is that yours also?

Speaker 5:

Yeah. That's us . Those, those were more opening. You know, sometimes what we do is we'll create models that are exclusive for certain channels , uh , like green grass , which is, you know, your , your pro shops across the country,

Speaker 7:

That green grass one, I

Speaker 5:

Don't even see that . That is a green grass model. Yeah . Who

Speaker 7:

Buys a range fighter at a golf course?

Speaker 8:

<laugh> there are places. Believe it or not

Speaker 7:

Really happen . I'm just wondering. I mean ,

Speaker 5:

I'm sure it definitely happens. Yeah .

Speaker 7:

I could see it. Right . Like if it's a display and someone just stand there , like , yeah,

Speaker 5:

You got a counter display, you got six units. You know, those remember especially private clubs, they have what they call sweeps. Right. You build up your sweeps balance for the year. Yeah . Which is all your winnings, you know, from tournaments. And at the end of the year, you have this one , $3 in your , and you gotta spend it. So sometimes it's just easy to

Speaker 7:

Grab . I that is that too. He's like, you know , he has like $800 now or whatever. Right . Saved up over the last couple years. But the pro shop sucks. Right. And then never anything. And it's like the biggest pay in the . Like he told me, he tried to get a pair of true links for shoes. It took 'em like two months and they had to order through a catalog and I'm like, just tell me , give they won't gimme your money back either. Right. They don't cash it out. It's like, they gotta buy something. It's like, but you don't have anything to buy. Yeah . You know, I'm much .

Speaker 5:

Well, that world is changed. I mean, the pro shops now they're all , they're all about son apparel anyway. Oh really? Um , yeah.

Speaker 7:

Cause it's easy. Right? It's tangible. It's fast. Like I could see like hats and shirts and polos and polo overs. It's a high market priced item . You know, it's probably a hundred percent markup on that. Like if you bought it online and it says like the golf course and you're like, oh, look at me. I'm cool. And then a cool hat, cause hats are cheap to make. Right. And it's like, no , yeah . Not,

Speaker 5:

You know you

Speaker 7:

Too , I guess. But

Speaker 5:

If it's a famous course, like if you go on a golf trip and you play P beach, you know, you want you walk

Speaker 7:

That .

Speaker 5:

Yeah . You're not gonna lead without buying a P beach. So

Speaker 7:

Status, right. Like beach ,

Speaker 5:

I , this cool. I have to buy

Speaker 8:

Hats everywhere I go. So

Speaker 5:

No you don't . And if you're a private club member, you're going , you want to , you're gonna buy a shirt that has your clubs logo on it . Right. You're gonna represent your , your own club . So , um, so pros , uh , that, that business has changed a bit over the years, but you know, like you mentioned , um, you know , uh , GPS, units and lasers, we , we do sell a decent number through that .

Speaker 7:

I , no , I , I mean, I knew you had the Swee , right? I knew you had the watch. What's the watch called?

Speaker 5:

Uh , Swee watch.

Speaker 8:

Watch

Speaker 7:

What

Speaker 8:

We got innovative with that one. That's

Speaker 7:

Alright . Hey, so knows all Jeff knows all that's what should be called these people and Jeff, all the products.

Speaker 8:

Do you know Jeff? You obviously , uh , it sounds like you know him

Speaker 5:

So well , listen , we have , we , we have 500 to a thousand skews , so it's hard to remember all , but , uh , yeah , but that's a lot. We've got like, we've got like a hundred different golf, tea skews. <laugh> colors and sizes. Yeah. We have every color, every size you can imagine. Yeah .

Speaker 8:

It's real fun to keep track of on Amazon. Yeah .

Speaker 5:

So

Speaker 7:

You , right . Like you do all, you manage Amazon and like, that's probably really big for you guys. Right? Like that's probably our biggest source I would say of traffic. Right?

Speaker 5:

Its our it's our biggest customer. Yeah . Worldwide .

Speaker 7:

Are you guys doing FBA or are you guys shipping directly out of his own New York?

Speaker 5:

No. We're

Speaker 8:

We used to do that .

Speaker 5:

We're considered one of their strategic suppliers. They only have a certain number in each category. Uh , and for their strategic suppliers, they wanna own the inventory. They don't want you to do FBA. Yeah. Um , so now it's

Speaker 7:

Supplier mean, I mean, I find it's interesting. That's

Speaker 8:

Why they order direct from us.

Speaker 5:

Yeah. They buy, they host it's it's a , it's a , it's a traditional wholesale retail relationship. Yep . Right . We're so

Speaker 7:

That work then, so then somebody orders the product from Amazon and it gets shipped directly out from you, right?

Speaker 5:

Well

Speaker 8:

They , no , I get shipped right from Amazon.

Speaker 7:

Yeah . Oh, they're holding the inventory.

Speaker 5:

Yeah. They hold

Speaker 7:

The you're the supplier, essentially, like you're saying

Speaker 8:

They own the inventory at the end of the day,

Speaker 7:

But oh , I , so they've .

Speaker 5:

Yeah. So then

Speaker 7:

Who creates the listings, then you guys have to create the listings. We

Speaker 8:

Create, we do , we create the listings, we advertise for it. Um, we work with various different software companies to collect data, to actually advertise these things appropriately. Yeah .

Speaker 7:

And then they , but you guys had done FBA before that though, right? Yes. Probably a

Speaker 5:

Years ago or something when we relaunched our golf bag line . Um , when was that back in no , 2013 .

Speaker 8:

About five years ago.

Speaker 5:

We , um , we , we initially did it through FBA mm-hmm <affirmative> and we thought, well, it's kind of a, a glorified way of selling direct to consumer. And it's at one point Amazon came to us and said, we don't want you to do that FBA . We wanna bring it in house . So I'm like, okay. And we

Speaker 8:

Were able

Speaker 7:

To sell and they know you're a good account. Yeah . And they're like, these people are selling and we need to speed it up and we gotta give 'em . Yeah.

Speaker 5:

It's well, now we're at a point , we're at a point now with golf bags with Amazon is they direct import. So they basically , we don't even right now, Amazon sells so many golf bags for us that it's all , um , they bring it in direct . They bring containers of bags indirect. We don't even see's

Speaker 7:

Manage anymore.

Speaker 5:

Right . We don't see it. No , I mean, we, so essentially you're

Speaker 7:

Just , just make like this.

Speaker 5:

Yeah, exactly.

Speaker 8:

Yeah .

Speaker 5:

<laugh> well, what's nice about that is yeah . In , in a way. And obviously you have to reach a certain scale .

Speaker 7:

Oh yeah . Threshold, like a pun of God of pushing.

Speaker 8:

It started slow. It started slow. I can't remember with FBA, we were starting pretty slow. And then within a year we were ramping up sales. Pretty good. And next thing you know, Jeff's on the phone with , uh , Amazon buyers , uh , getting us to go in-house with him .

Speaker 7:

That's awesome .

Speaker 5:

So

Speaker 7:

Maybe heard that . I didn't know you happen, you know, like I feel like a lot afraid to do it Amazon, honestly. Yeah . They're like scared of it . They're like, oh, I don't know if I do that. Cause huge learning curve. Right . There's a lot to it.

Speaker 5:

Yeah. Yeah. There's a lot of moving parts. If you don't know what you're doing with Amazon. Yeah. You will fail. Um, and we've got good at now. We've been doing business with Amazon for, you know, since 20 years. I mean, Amazon really hasn't been around as long as people think. I mean, we, I think we started with Amazon in 2009 .

Speaker 8:

Yeah .

Speaker 7:

Yeah . They're selling books, you know like doing, yeah . Amazon didn't become Amazon until he became a seller of other people's stuff. You know what I mean? Like they were just , they , Amazon would be gone if they were still doing books . Right. So

Speaker 8:

It's really been in the last 10 years.

Speaker 7:

Like it , yeah .

Speaker 5:

It's been crazy . It's I mean, it's, it's exploded. It really is .

Speaker 7:

So what's your biggest products right now that you guys are selling, then you think of all the products you have, what are the most popular products?

Speaker 5:

Well, revenue wise , mainly because of the price point. It's gonna be technology. So it's lasers and GPS. Yeah. That volume

Speaker 7:

Volume it's volume.

Speaker 5:

Yeah . Yeah . Well , it's not only the volume in units, but obviously when you're talking about a product itself for a hundred, hundred 50, 200, 300, $400, obviously it , it , you know, to

Speaker 7:

Multiply there .

Speaker 5:

Yeah. And then golf bags because golf bag , price points, and we have arranged between a hundred and $300 golf bags. And so obviously sweet spot when you're selling products with those kind of price points, if you're selling enough of them, they become your top selling. So if you rank our products by revenue, golf, technology, golf bags in , um , push carts, you know , the higher hitting nets and we sell a lot of $200 hitting nets. Um, if you're talking units, well then like you mentioned earlier , um , consumables, like bags of tees and ball markers . I mean, that's starts retails. You guys sell a lot of units to generate a lot of revenue in a $3 . Right . You know , so like

Speaker 8:

The flat ball , the flat ball , we probably sell the most of in terms of units. And , but

Speaker 7:

It's , I mean that

Speaker 5:

10 bucks ,

Speaker 8:

The flat ball . Yeah .

Speaker 5:

Flat ball retails for 7 99. Right . So you gotta sell , but we sell billion

Speaker 7:

Units, right? Yeah. Yeah .

Speaker 8:

Times 20 ,

Speaker 5:

The Testament to a product's popularity is, is do you get placement into big box? So for instance, like the flat balls in every Dick sporting good location, it's in 3000 , uh , Walmart doors, you know what I mean? So when you get that kind of placement, now you take a low, Hey, listen, you put a two hour item into 3000 Walmart doors. That stuff adds up pretty quick. Yeah. Um, especially if it's a consumable item, something you need all the time. Um, and, and so, yeah, we obviously, because we have, you know , we have so 500 plus SKUs, we got many SKUs that retail for under $10. We have many SKUs that retail for under $20. Obviously you gotta sell a lot of those unit wise , um, which we do, you know, those are successful items for us, for sure. So ,

Speaker 7:

Well , I think that's so cool. Is that like, I didn't say , I didn't know. That was your story. Like that's how you guys started was the double strap . I no idea. Right? Yeah. And then it's how you like pivoted so many times, right. It was like, we have this and then we, like, you could have just been a strap company. Right. And then that would run away with the wind. Right. And then it's like, no, then you started bringing accessories who you saw in accessory market. And these are going to GPS units and then you get a deal of Callway 15 years ago. So you become a wholesaler for Callway or you become like a , really a, you know, a , um , what's the word? Uh , I can't think the word, but like essentially you're making stuff, work Calloway . And then , um , white label, you're white labeling for Calloway . And then, then you come with technology stuff and it's like, you're always evolving. Right? Like what's the, so, I mean , that's , I had no idea. I had no idea if this was this big , um, what what's new for this year for ISO ? Like what you guys , what are you guys gonna be doing this year?

Speaker 5:

Well, we have , um, you know, that you mentioned on the hitting net side, those true view, you know, the idea it's, it's a dramatic, you know, pivot in the hitting net, traditional hitting net world . I mean, hitting nets are what we've seen for many years, the traditional traditional , you know , mesh netting. So this notion of the technology's caught up and now the , this true view hitting it's , we call true view trainer. As I mentioned, it's not a traditional hitting net and how it's manufactured, but it , it is a, a hitting system and we love

Speaker 7:

Net behind it or no, it's just the white thing.

Speaker 5:

What's that?

Speaker 7:

That is there a net behind the Tru

Speaker 5:

View ? Oh no , no ,

Speaker 7:

No . Just the Tru view . You're hitting a Tru view essentially. Yeah.

Speaker 5:

You're just hitting right into

Speaker 7:

The image . It's absorbing the hit.

Speaker 5:

Yep . Yeah. It's not tied down at the bottom. It's weighted. So it kind of hangs. And again , you know , when you think about hitting into a simulator, it's that kind of feel, you know, it's that kind of sound. Um, but simulators, we all know cause a lot of money. So it really is the, an affordable simulator. You can get an actual high res image of a fairway or a green. So when you're practicing, you know, again, it helps your focus in golf. You

Speaker 7:

Gotta have it . You have no idea, right? Like you that's , you just know this part, but everything out there, you have no idea. You just hit the it's like ball in a net. Like , but at least with this, you can see where it hits for a second. Right? Like you , as you turn, you see like, oh, that one's low or that went high or that one's straight or whatever. And that's kind of cool.

Speaker 5:

Well, part of it is just really comes down to like back to the fundamentals in golf , right. Visualizing your shot . Right . So it's , it's hard to visualize your shot. We don't have a target when you're hitting into it . This is smart. You know? So if you , if you have a eight by eight screen, 10 feet from you, and it's a picture of a fairway, a high res color image of a fairway, similar to like what you see behind me then, you know, as you're practicing, you're focusing on a target hitting in the middle of a fairway. And again, it's just, there's the psychology of it. It helps, you know, it helps improve your practice sessions. I mean, that's, that's the theory behind it. Smart . Um , so that kind of thing now , and also what's really trending now , Paul is golf games. Yeah. So this would be, I mean, there's so many great reasons why a golf game , uh , makes a lot of sense. Number one, it's a great gift. Uh , so for , for the avid golf in your life, whether it's father's day or, you know , golf gifts are very popular at certain times of year, if not all year , uh , because as you guys know all of us avid golfers, that's what my kids bought me. It's always some kind of a golf gift .

Speaker 7:

Yeah . What does ad want? Uh , we should get , 'em do something golf related . Yeah. That

Speaker 5:

A no idea. Right . And what golf games are great is you can , you know, we designed them to be able to be played in the backyard safely, so, or tailgate, beach, whatever it may be. Uh , so we're building out a , a pretty extensive range of golf games that do a couple things. They're fun in the backyard . They're great for teaching your kids how to play golf, even from an early age. Um, you know, we include like, you know, foam ball, you know, they're , they're , you know, you know, soft flight golf balls, right. So you can , you know , so if one of your kids gets hit in the forehead, they're not gonna

Speaker 7:

Problem my kids . Like you cry about it.

Speaker 5:

Yeah . I mean, we have our , we have our is O pong hole . All right . So what is that? Well, we take corn hole in pong , two pretty popular games, and we create a chipping game around those games. So, I mean, last year I went on a golf trip to Pinehurst and we had eight guys and I shipped one of these pong holes down, and guess what? We were playing every night out in the backyard after our round, you know, we're all, you know , be we're betting, we're having a few cocktails and we're playing pong <laugh> , you know, with our, with our wedges and , and we are actually using real balls. Uh , and so the , the golf game, you mentioned kind of what's coming well, golf games are very popular now and we're building that category out. It's a relatively new category for us, but we, we probably have this spring, Aaron probably what, six or seven or eight. Yeah . You know , golf games. Yeah. So

Speaker 8:

I know we have at least six that we'll be here by

Speaker 7:

Beginning say right now. Right. They're different ones , correct?

Speaker 5:

Yep . Yeah. You'll see. 'em on Amazon too. Like we have ski golf, which you think about ski bowling. Right. You guys have been to David bus , you can ski ball . So we took, we , we built like the game ski , uh , around like a putting mat. So, so basically you're putting, instead of throwing a ball, a bowling ball, you're putting into a ski, you know, kind of a ski golf , so a ramp into the whole . Yeah . So taking a popular game and then building golf into it. And it's great for practice great with your kids down in the basement. Even like this time of year where it's, you know , where we live, it's still cold. You know, you can , you could put one in your man cave and have , and have games, putting games and stuff. Um , so yeah, golf games are pretty hot right now.

Speaker 7:

So I didn't know that that's , I mean, I, I totally see why, right. Because it's like, it's practice essentially is what it is. And then it's like, we all like to play against each other and we're all competitive. So you're gonna be able to have fun practice, talk crap. And like I work with Chipo. Right. And Chipo yeah.

Speaker 5:

Like Chipo is a good example. Yeah . Perfect example.

Speaker 7:

Yep . You know , and Brendan , you know , when he started it like four or five years ago, like it's, it's smart. Like it didn't exist. Right. Like, and then it's like, it's cool because these games are like fun. Right. Yeah . And you're really practicing. Like I, you know, I think that's the key . I get a lot of emails from like listeners and subscribers and stuff. And they were like, I hate practicing. What can I do to make it fun? Right. I get that all the time. And I'm like, and this is , I didn't think about this. I would just say, oh, you know , you can go to the range and, you know, use a range fine . Or not like a shot monitor and play games or whatever. But it's like, you know, practicing putting, like, I, I use , I play , I have a perfect practice and I use that. Right. Like my kids play that it's like competitive. And I remember playing that as a kid, like that crappy little green, you could buy, they had that little flappy things on it. Remember the little cup. Yeah . I with my dad, I remember Mitch golf courses through my house. Right. Like , and I think that's the theme because if you make the game fun and practicing fun, it's not , it's not practice. It's just

Speaker 5:

Dork . You're absolutely. No , it it's . The golf games are great. Great. Um, they're great tools for teaching your kids how to play golf because , um , because like I said , you can throw 'em in your backyard and like my, I have a grandson, believe it or not, who's four years old. And , uh, I've , I , I set up , uh , we have a game where you set up targets with a real flag, Paul in your backyard ,

Speaker 7:

Like charts,

Speaker 5:

Kinda like charts , but with golf ,

Speaker 7:

Remember that game even back by the eighties, man .

Speaker 5:

That was fun . Yeah . Catching. Yeah . Uh , yeah. So anyway, my four year old grandson loves, you know, I got foam balls, right. I have his , he's got his plastic, you know, golf clubs and, and I'll put the target out there and , and sure enough, he's like, I'm like, okay, his name's Lincoln. I'm like, Lincoln, let's go. I'm gonna beach . You know? And he gets all into it and he wants to get the foam ball. Cuz we have a , a flag with a bunch of targets, you know, inside the whole three , three foot , five foot , you know, radius. And, and even from an adult when put my grandson aside for a minute, if I'm out in the backyard with real golf balls, it's a great way to practice your chipping. Yeah . You know? So it , it , it just has so many

Speaker 8:

Difference .

Speaker 7:

I think it's really , it's another thing that no, one's really spending a lot of time in, right. Like right . You have some brands doing it. Right. But it's like, again, you guys are taking that and multiplying it.

Speaker 5:

Right.

Speaker 7:

And you're creating a , a market that isn't there yet. I mean, it's small, but not like, you know, an established market kind of like you did with, well, everything

Speaker 8:

Else I've seen a lot too with , with the new, I mean, you've seen the pandemic bringing a lot of new golfers to the industry, what

Speaker 7:

I've noticed.

Speaker 8:

Yeah. It's huge. And I've noticed a lot of these golfers, you know, golf gets a bad rap about, you know, guys are kind of sticklers out. They're a little boring from time to time and what we're seeing with a lot of the , um , newer people into golf, you know, I know a lot of my friends, a lot of my cousins, they just wanna go out there and have fun. You know, they don't, and these golf games are a great way for them to get indoctrinated into the sport. Uh , learn the sport. Yeah . Right . Still

Speaker 7:

Have fun , barbecue, or hanging out with your family. You have this and then the guys can play golf and he has a little fun playing it. You should be like, oh cool. And then they're like, oh, you should come play with us. It's fun. We go to it . Like , there's your entry way ? Oh , I'm not good. Don't worry. Nobody's good. Right . That's why we play this game. Right.

Speaker 8:

Like that's why we drink on the course. That's

Speaker 7:

Why we drink a lot.

Speaker 8:

That's right .

Speaker 7:

In some states you do a little, you know,

Speaker 8:

You ,

Speaker 7:

Whatever ,

Speaker 5:

We don't , we don't , we like to , we don't promote the 19th hole here.

Speaker 8:

Right . Well , that's right. I heard that

Speaker 5:

<laugh> but

Speaker 7:

Everyone wants to be the rod danger field . That's I know.

Speaker 8:

That's

Speaker 5:

What I , well, you know what Paul, really, to , to , you know , just to close on that point. I mean, you know , some of these games, it's not rocket science, it's just, you know, we have, you know , we have the luxury and wherewithal based on our reach to be able to, you know, throw new items on top of a , a very well established network. And so you already

Speaker 7:

It's like, you kind of already are not making some dumb game up. Right. And be , oh, tell people , buy it. It's like, you guys have the education and the experience like, Hey, this is actually helpful. Right. And it's we think this is gonna do well

Speaker 5:

Now . Well , we can get , we can get a new product to market pretty quick too, you know, because we, we can get it . We can get in front of the exporting goods. I can get in front of Walmart and get in front of target. I can get on those website, you know, so we can get right

Speaker 7:

Away . Yeah. You you're very entries done. Yeah. Your , your very entry is done. Right? Like essentially, it's like, we have an idea we're coming out where we're gonna do a limited order to see how cool this is. And people actually like it, but you can easily test on Amazon, like pretty quick. Right. Without having to sell to the retailers. And then if it works, you're like, yep . It works. And then you go to retail and say,

Speaker 5:

Hey, we're

Speaker 7:

Blowing this up on Amazon. You should buy into it. And you know, whatever,

Speaker 5:

You know, we mentioned social media and influencers earlier. I mean, those golf games just fit. Right. I mean, that's how chip built chip

Speaker 8:

Reach

Speaker 5:

Out . That's how they built their brand. Right. I mean, they , they did a lot of social media. They show people, you know, playing Chipo, you know, on the, on the beach . Yeah . Pretty

Speaker 7:

Bald ball does that too.

Speaker 8:

Yeah. Yeah . And they do a great job of, you know, those videos reach, reach the , the bright clientele.

Speaker 7:

That's what comes down to it's like just showing people it's fun and it's cool. And it's something that like, you need to be part of. Right. Or you get purchase or, I mean, I love chip. I have a chip in my backyard . I mean, I did chip. I think

Speaker 5:

We're well, we'll just send him a pong hole . Aaron . Yeah . Pong

Speaker 7:

Sending me stuff. Come

Speaker 8:

On. Yeah. I'll send you some more stuff.

Speaker 7:

Yeah . My dad might Dan it for me this time . No , I don't what to happen ?

Speaker 5:

Um , well we took, we took the pong though . Very seriously. Like from a pong standpoint, you know, when you , not that I played any pong in my life , of

Speaker 7:

Course anybody you play this never like all

Speaker 8:

Too . Yeah . That was the <laugh>

Speaker 5:

We had to , you know , we had to solve the problem of okay . When you make one, how do you cl you know , cuz in pong , you take the cup away, right? Yeah . So in , in a , in a , in a fixed game,

Speaker 7:

You , yeah . I plays all day long. It's be so much fun. Yeah.

Speaker 5:

Yeah . So we came up with the idea of , we came up with a flap and a Velcro to close the whole, I mean, so we really,

Speaker 7:

The funniest commercial, you'll be the funniest commercial for this. Like I just this idea, right . I maybe do this, like, I'll go, I'll go to the pitching pitching range. Right. The golf course . And it'll be all these guys pitching and I'll put it and then I'll set up my pong game right next to it. And like, not even , I just wanna use the grass. Right. And I'm not even use the gyming area . I'm just be playing pong . And I , people be like, oh, what's that? That's cool. And we're just drinking. That's

Speaker 5:

Good . No , I had some , I was playing in a , an invitational at a pretty well, you know , high end course here , uh , LA . It was before COVID the year before COVID and we had just launched the Phole . We didn't actually, we hadn't launched it yet. We just had like a sample couple demo samples. And first round of the invitational , they had kind of a stag night where all the guys show up at someone's house. And this thing was a huge thing. And I brought Palm with me and set it up in the backyard . It was like the biggest hit of the night. Like everyone's playing it, you know, it's just like said it's perfect setting .

Speaker 7:

It's competitive. It's fun. Yeah . It's chill and you're practicing and you're already on a guy's trip. So it's like, that's right. Why ? You know, it's like the perfect storm, right.

Speaker 5:

It really is. It's you know, for , for obviously everyone it's a captive audience, cuz these are all guys that are playing an invitational . So golf's in there. But I mean we're at night, we're having a couple beers and

Speaker 7:

You know, we prob you probably sold units that night without even knowing.

Speaker 5:

Uh , that's what I mean, no, I had a lot of guys who were like, where can I get one of those? You know ? I mean , so the whole , the word of mouth thing definitely was , and Jeff

Speaker 7:

Give him the business card. He's like , Hey, I'm nice to meet you. Well, I think I'm really happy. You guys run the show today. This was fun. Like, you know, Aaron and I always play email tag, right? Yeah . Like we have for a long time, especially with COVID and like everything happened with COVID . We like, yeah . You know, but I honestly did not realize how diverse your company was. I had no idea. I mean I did, but I did it. You almost think like, I don't know until I know this I'm like, oh, that makes sense. Oh, that makes sense. So I'm a fan of IZO I have been, since I first started working U three guys three, four years ago, I think you guys make phenomenal products. It's not cheap junk. Right. And it's like, that's what people think. I don't people ever think that like this stuff is high, high quality it's well thought out and it's extremely well executed. And like, I think you're the first brand I've had on the show. Or I've talked to that like is as big a accessories that I've ever known. Like honestly, like I don't think else like this. Yeah . Um , and I think, I think it's a tested into what you guys are doing and I'm really, you guys need to check out IZO and, or you can buy Callway things that have , that is O made it it , where can people find ISOs ? Like IZO golf.com or what is it?

Speaker 5:

Yeah . IZO golf.com . Yep .

Speaker 7:

Cool.

Speaker 8:

You can go direct . We're actually , uh , going through a process of revamping the website right now . So we will be launching a new website probably in the next , uh , month or so

Speaker 7:

Are you doing that to Aaron ? Is that your job ?

Speaker 8:

Yep . Yep . That would be me. Yep .

Speaker 5:

<laugh> yeah. We, we , you know, we , we're a wholesaler by nature and , and we don't, we're not in the direct to consumer business. Part of it is cuz we have partnerships with the biggest retailers who don't want us to, you know, compete against them . Right. So ,

Speaker 7:

And you're a wholesaler with your own products that you can purchase from your website, but like that's right . But you're also like it's probably 2% of your sales go through your website.

Speaker 5:

No , you're absolutely

Speaker 7:

Correct . It's like everything it's like, you're known for where you're everywhere else. It's like, you have to have the website, you have the sales, but that's not who you are. Like , this

Speaker 5:

Is just a , you absolutely . Right . Well that's , that's

Speaker 8:

Why Paul and I play a lot of phone or email tag too, because I , I love to work with you Paul , more than, you know , more than we do. But a lot of times it's we don't do a lot of the direct to consumer type , uh , things. And it is what it is unfortunately, but

Speaker 7:

Yeah . Yeah . And, and it is cool because you guys do a lot. Right. Like I thought it was kind of cool. Like you go to, like, I was at PJ Superstore and I saw like your travel back , you know, like your travel duffle thing. And I was like, yeah . Oh I know IZO did that. And I was like two weeks ago. Right? Like it's , you're you're everywhere. Like people don't realize you're literally everywhere and that's what's no,

Speaker 5:

No , you're absolutely right. Like I said , we , we , we saw we most, I mean, by far, like you said, I mean 98% of our sales are through the biggest retailers in the world. Yeah . That's crazy. That's crazy. And again, our , our own site is transactional just because it , it has to be, it's really , it's really their , uh ,

Speaker 7:

You're not driving traffic to the site.

Speaker 5:

We're not driving . Yep . We're not there to try to compete with our retail partners and stuff.

Speaker 7:

So no. And you guys are killing it. We're probably are you guys are probably destroying it on Amazon. I guarantee , I already know you are . You have to

Speaker 5:

Be . Yeah . I know . Two years the <laugh> well, I will say this. Who was a thought, but uh COVID is a very golf, friendly situation. <laugh> I mean , we , uh , golf has really been .

Speaker 7:

Yeah. But there was time to , I was like, Aaron was like, dude, it's like bad because he was saying like, Somebody else, like , you know, with supply chain issues, I mean, this is all , I mean, that was the worst part of it, but it like, it reopened the game up right. To people that had never tried it. And I don't know . I mean,

Speaker 5:

No , no . A lot of new golfers came in , Hey, listen. At some , at one point early on, I mean, you there's all this , the only you could do outside your house, go play golf,

Speaker 7:

Go to park or that. And you had to be like , yeah, I remember. I mean, the market for bags and push carts exploded like exploded. Right . And you couldn't get clubs anywhere. Second, second hand clubs . There's no market for anymore because you couldn't buy me anywhere. Right. Absolutely . And it's still happening now. Like I don't know . I'm a big fan of IZO I've always has been. You guys have been good to us since the beginning and I've been a fan. So thank you for being on the show. You guys need to check out IZO stuff. I will see you guys in the next episode.

Speaker 5:

Wow , man. Thanks for the , uh , thanks Paul. Thanks Bob. We'll chat soon. Yeah.

Speaker 3:

Thanks for listening to another episode of behind the golf brand podcast, you're gonna beat me the golf stay connected on and off the show by visiting golfers authority.com . Don't forget to like subscribe and leave a comment . Golf is always more fun when you win, stay out of the beach and see you on the green.