GolfLan: A window to the Golf enthusiast
While there existed numerous avenues for cricket and football fans to connect and interact, there was limited opportunity for a golfing enthusiast before Dhruv Verma came with his idea of GolfLan, a business initiative to help elucidate the hardships of the Indian golf industry.
Incepted in March 2013, GolfLan offers subscription services to play golf across the globe. The name GolfLan is derived from the word “Golf” and “LAN (Local Area Network)” which integrates very well together and brings us one of the first Golf Centric on-line community focused on getting golfers from across the globe under one unique platform. It is a technology company that aims to make the game of golf more accessible and affordable. With its parent company in New Delhi, it has 100 percent subsidiaries in Dubai, Singapore, US and South Africa. Currently, GolfLan is the official golf concierge partners for Standard Chartered Bank, Diners Club International, Development Bank of Singapore, HDFC Bank, Axis Bank, RAKBANK, Mashreq Bank, Emirates National Bank of Dubai, and Union Pay.
Golflan acquired StayPrime in 2016, a company based in UAE for all kind of cash transaction in order to strengthen its technology. It also took possession of golfgreedy.com in 2016 in an equity sale to strengthen its consumer and retail reach across South East Asia. Golflan now connects regularly with over 200,000 golfers and offers multiple services under following brands:
StayPrime: The most advanced golf cart fleet management system in the market, StayPrime’s GPS can now be deployed on any course, any cart, to every nook and corner of the world. Around hundred plus courses and across twenty-five plus countries, StayPrime device is now used to manage golf rounds, save course management costs as well as to earn additional revenue.
TeePass& Corporate Golf Solutions: Tee Pass™, a global golf pass allows golfers to play complimentary golf games at four thousand plus courses across forty plus countries. The programme is one of the most sought-after elite annual subscriptions for affordable and global golf with dynamic modules for different category of consumers. Premium brands strengthen their own product offering vis-a-vis the competition.
Golf Greedy & Tee time marketplace: GolfGreedy.com & GolfLan make the sport of golf more accessible and affordable to golfers while leveraging golf clubs to elevate their course utilization and revenue. Through an easy to use a mobile-friendly web application, golfers can search and book tee times from thousands of golf courses around the globe and play at better value prices.
GolfLan solutions automate critical golf course functions and provide keen decision enabling insights to the golf courses thereby reducing the operational cost of running the golf course with an increase in the revenue from golfers across multiple touch points such as F&B, Green Fees, Rounds booking, Pace of play, Customer service etc. GolfLan corporate and retail solutions are increasing the golf play amongst golfers in order to increase the traffic and utilization at the golf courses.
The technological platform of GolfLan exhibit most insightful decision analytics for the golf industry. It introduces global golf course and golfer usage the process of data capturing while assisting up to 1mn buggy rounds every year. GolfLan’s StayPrime technology is globally amongst the top three Smart Cart solutions. Its StayPrime products are deployed at some of the most prestigious courses across the globe, counting Spain’s best course – Valderrama, Singapore’s SICC, UAE’s Jumeirah Golf Estates and US’s Medalist as its customers.
GolfLan fosters organic traffic acquisition. Over 100,000 golf bookings are received organically via OTTO and enterprise engagements. Golfers from across the portfolio can avail Golflytics and cross-company platforms for multiple requirements. The business model allows for the low cost of operation which is not enabled to other leading players from the industry. Apart from Delhi, its offices are spread across UAE, Singapore and South Africa for sales expansion and technology architectural development.
The GolfLan business model that works across the demand (golfers) and supply side (golf courses) is a differentiating factor that sets it apart from its competitors allowing GolfLan better reach, relationship and pricing. Each business has been built on the high end and value-driven customer offering that is far superior to the existing solutions available in terms of the variety, costing, technology and service.
The technology has proved to be a necessary tool for golf courses. StayPrime F&B & advertising modules have on an averagely increased golf club F&B and advertising revenue by twenty percent. StayPrime and Golflytics enable $40,000 per annum average revenue increment and $15,000 per annum saving per golf course. GolfLan is the number one golf management system for corporate and is amongst the top two global golf providers across the globe.
With the proven record, GolfLan had successfully raised $1 million in 2016 from ISON, an Africa-based information technology group, and its existing investor YourNest angel fund. GolfLan will use the funds to expand in overseas markets such as Africa, Middle East, Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia, Thailand, and Vietnam. Previously, the company had also raised $1 million in 2015 from YourNest and multiple angel investors. GolfLan is in the process to raise another $1.2 million soon, of which $500,000 has already been raised from a Dubai based HNI.
Behind GolfLan’s Success
The opportunity to connect and interact with like-minded people is a boon. At the age of 37, Dhruv Verma, an avid golfer finding the golf processes and availability of golfing to be primitive and frustrating, initiated his own business to resolve the problems of the Indian golf industry. This particular idea soon created a buzz in the market. Encouraged by the market response, Dhruv took the leap of faith – quit his affluent job at Aircel as the Head of Sales Academy and took over GolfLan full time investing his savings as the seed fund.
Over a career of more than fifteen years, Dhruv had a bevy of supporters and believers, who followed him in his business leap. His vision received immense trust from his fledgling team of three to four people who collectively decided to bring it into action. Most of the people who were a part of GolfLan’s initial years have continued to be a part of the company and today play some of the most strategic roles in the company. At present, the company works with forty employees. The biggest pull for past and current employees has been Dhruv’s ingenuity, passion and ability to bring the best out of his team.
Future of GolfLan
Apart from expanding and establishing new markets across Africa, Europe, North America and Oceania, GolfLan also aims to provide a wider variety of automation and big data solutions for golf courses and corporate in near future to reduce the cost of golf operation and thereby the cost of playing golf.