Ernie Els, a four-time Major winner, former world number one and member of the prestigious World Golf Hall of Fame, has announced his investment and partnership with mobile golf technology startup, 18Birdies.
Els has won an impressive 70 professional tournaments around the world, but equally has a reputation of focusing on the global inclusive nature of golf. It is for this reason that Els – who was also honoured as a Muhammad Ali Sports Humanitarian Award finalist on July 11th – chose to invest in 18Birdies and its mission to expand golf participation and inspire positivity on the course.
“Too often, players lose the joy of the game in the number on a scorecard,” said Els. “The 18Birdies team uses technology not only to improve game performance, but to inspire the mental approach to the game and ultimately help people enjoy their golf more. I applaud that. I’ve seen what their technology can do and really believe in the continued innovation they are bringing to the golf experience.”
Els is no stranger to entrepreneurship, as he has a number of successful ventures including a full-service golf course design company, Ernie Els Design, The Els Club Resorts, Els Performance Golf Academy, Ernie Els Wines, and an ever-growing number of Big Easy Winebar & Grills located around the world. In his new role as an investor in 18Birdies, Ernie will advise in connection with the company’s innovative mobile app technology. In addition, 18Birdies’ cloud based tournament management software will provide live scoring to the 2017 Els for Autism Golf Challenge events in the U.S.
“We’re very honoured that Ernie has chosen to support us with his time, golf wisdom, and investment,” said 18Birdies Founder and CEO, Eddy Lui. “Not only is Els one of the most storied players in PGA TOUR history, he is an accomplished business owner and will provide invaluable insight as we continue to develop our platform for novice and experienced golfers alike.”
18Birdies latest innovation in golf is its recently introduced DreamGames campaign, which aims to increase golf participation by rewarding users for simply playing golf, no matter how good or bad they play. The more golf a user plays, the more chances they have to win daily prizes such as premium drivers, wedges, golf balls and cash. Other major prizes include a group trip to play golf with professional golfer and social media sensation, Paige Spiranac; or the chance to win one of 12 grand prize dream golf experiences playing in the Wednesday Pro-Am at the 2018 Arnold Palmer Invitational. 18Birdies has seen a positive impact on participation, as
DreamGames users are playing 42 percent more rounds than the average app user.