Monday, February 4, 2013

Craig's Crossing - Orlando Notes

Orlando is always fast-moving and it is difficult to focus on specifics as there are approximately 1000 exhibitors hosting a projected 43,000 PGA professionals, retailers and industry leaders. It is Mecca for the industry and interesting every year for its array of new products, ideas and services. I like to look for the details others may have missed as I walk the show and attempt to get to know its new exhibitors.

Here are a few of my topics of note, some of which I will be expanding on in coming weeks
  • Broken Earth Winery has a private label program and great wine at reasonable prices that is perfect for gifts, tournaments, house wines, etc.

  • AHEAD’s new booth and management team as well as their new apparel line are first rate. Read Scott Stone’s interview here.
  • Andy Renshaw (The Winston Collection) said,  "I think the greatest selling point of our covers is the fact that they are simple, no diamonds or chevrons, just classic leather with big, bold club embroidery. The other full grain, leather, head cover companies are dropping a small club logo at the bottom, worrying more about the design than the cover itself."
  • Ouray Sportswear recently interviewed here had a very successful show and made a lot of friends with product that was unique and reasonable.
  • A Girl's On-Course Survival Guide to Golf by Christina Ricci is a product you want to consider retailing in your shop. Adds incremental revenue to your ladies business. Christina when asked about adding new and creative products for women made the observation that, "This year at the Show I saw a new energy, a cool buzz that extends beyond optimism into a new attitude of 'We're ready.' Last year, I felt like it was still conceptual; Industry Professionals still were not fully committed. This year that's all changed. All I heard was, 'Let's do this!' 
  • Cynthia Wark (President of PGF) is a delight to talk to and won The Pinnacle Award for best new invention with a personal golf fan, designed to sit in the cup holder.
  • Brook’s Brothers booth was not a large booth but always busy.
  • Martin Dingman has added apparel to his offering. It is incredibly first rate as is everything Martin decides to build.
  • Alial Fital is not a look that everyone will like but has developed a following. More about these unique limited edition, Made in USA shirts in the near future.
  • Greg Norman and Dunning Golf had another great year, show and party at the Peabody on Friday evening.
  • Mark Killeen (Full Turn Direct) explained that the "new knit fabrications are driving a ton of interest in the market. Full Turn is offering a new luxury shirt that is a unique blend of Swiss Micro Tencel (for no wrinkles) and Supima cotton (for luxury hand) that is plated in white mulberry silk (naturally anti-microbial), and a new performance shirt that is a blend of Supima cotton and a bamboo charcoal infused micro poly that can be folded and stacked on a table." Contact

The PGA of America and PGA Worldwide Exhibitions announced that the 2014 PGA Merchandise Show will run Tuesday through Friday, January 21st – 24th. Demo Day will be at Orange County National Golf Center on Tuesday Jan. 21st rather than Wednesday of show week. This will make it easier for PGA head pros and other golf personnel to stay through the whole show; many attending members have been leaving Friday afternoon or evening so as to be back at their facilities, etc. for the weekend. It seems this move should make the last day of the show more meaningful.

There will be more extensive coverage of some of the above in the coming weeks.