Global Edition

Golf Management Group grows UK franchise network

12.27pm 21st September 2016 - Corporate

Richard Butler is GMG’s new Regional Director for East, South and West Yorkshire
Richard Butler is GMG’s new Regional Director for East, South and West Yorkshire

GMG, with over £5 million combined buying power the UK’s leading purchasing alliance for golf clubs, is set to expand its 500-strong UK club network still further with the appointment of three new franchisees in England.

The newcomers complete the rollout of GMG’s first-phase franchise programme, with more regions set to be made available in the first half of 2017.

Covering the West Midlands, East Midlands and South, West and East Yorkshire including Hull and Humberside, the three new Golf Management Group franchisees will cover over 400 golf clubs between them, each taking the role of Regional Director in their area.

GMG’s decision in Spring 2016 to make more regional franchises available has resulted in five new Regional Directors being appointed so far in 2016. The three most recent new arrivals join Ian Howieson in Scotland plus Phil Sparks (Kent, East & West Sussex, Herts, Essex, Suffolk and Greater London), and Tim & Angus Lloyd-Skinner (who recently came on board to manage the Surrey, Berks and Greater London area, plus the Bucks, Beds, Oxon and Northants area) in the GMG team.

GMG benchmarks core expenditure categories at golf clubs, and then works with the club’s management team to realise savings in each category. It also takes over much of the day-to-day work involving a golf club’s suppliers, saving club managers countless valuable hours in the process.

“This is a two-phase initiative” said GMG’s Scott Partington. “Next year we will open up opportunities particularly in the West and Wales, but for now we are focused on giving our first group of franchisees top-class training and support as they grow business in their regions.

“This is good news for golf clubs in the Midlands and North, as our three new Regional Directors are each not only highly experienced businessmen, but they are also steeped in golf knowledge at grass roots level. They are all well-qualified to help golf clubs reduce supplier costs and manage sometimes complex supplier relationships, and I think each will be a great asset to clubs in their region.”

Mark Stancer, the new GMG Regional Director for Staffordshire, Leicestershire, Warwickshire and Worcestershire, said: “I fully understand the golf club environment, and am a born problem-solver. There are almost 175 golf clubs in my region, and I aim to help as many as possible to gain a competitive advantage by becoming more sustainable.”

As a PGA Professional who has gained extensive experience in a career managing private member golf clubs, proprietary golf clubs and golf resort hotels, Stancer is clear on why GMG has grown so fast since its inception in 2010. “GMG exists to help golf clubs achieve greater operating efficiency and profit delivery” he said. “Every golf club relies on a host of suppliers, no matter how it is structured or operated. GMG helps the club optimise its key supplier relationships, from both cost and time-efficiency standpoints.”

The new GMG Regional Director in South, East and West Yorkshire – one of England’s busiest golfing regions – is buying expert and lifelong golfer Richard Butler. “I will bring extra firepower to golf clubs when it comes to purchasing solutions” he said. “Not only do I have direct relationships with dozens of the largest suppliers in the UK, but I have also run my own hospitality business so I know what it is like at the sharp end.

“I would describe myself as a straight-talker with a ton of experience, and I certainly think I will be able to save Yorkshire golf clubs time and money with my new role at GMG.”

The East Midlands counties of Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire and Lincolnshire contain over 120 golf clubs. “The support system which GMG offers both golf clubs and franchisees is outstanding” said Jeff Thuburn, the area’s new GMG Regional Director. “The group quickly shows clubs how easy it is to make big savings.

“The more clubs that join, the greater the buying power. I have already spoken to many golf clubs in the East Midlands who would recommend GMG to other clubs without hesitation, as after all we all benefit when new clubs join, through the additional purchasing power which they bring to the group.”

The single figure golfer, who has a sales & marketing background, has – like the other two new franchisees – already made an impact in his region. “Although we only started in summer 2016, it is fair to say that each of us is already well up and running, and we invite any golf club manager to contact GMG to make a no-obligation enquiry.”

For more information on how your club can benefit from being a GMG member, please call 0161 485 5410 or email

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