Cobra Golf

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Cobra Golf
Subsidiary
IndustrySports equipment
Founded1973; 47 years ago (1973)
FounderThomas L. Crow
Headquarters,
USA
Key people
Bob Philion, President [1]
ProductsGolf clubs
BrandsKing
ParentPuma
Websitecobragolf.com

Cobra Golf is a sports equipment manufacturing company based in Carlsbad, California, focused on golf equipment, producing a wide range of golf clubs. The company is currently a subsidiary of the German athleticwear and sports lifestyle company Puma SE, which in turn is partly owned by the French holding Kering.

History[edit]

Origin[edit]

The company was founded in 1973 by Thomas L. Crow, winner of the 1961 Australian amateur golf championship. He was inspired by the notion that golfers in the United States typically bought clubs at a whim, with the hopes that they may make their game better.[2] Cobra produced one of the first utility clubs, the "Baffler" –introduced in 1980– long before the use of such clubs became popular. Cobra was dedicated to the average golfer, especially ladies and seniors[3] which makes it understandable that is also the first U.S. club manufacturer to sell stock graphite-shafted woods and irons that are known for being lighter clubs.[4] In five years, Cobra Golf was selling about $4.5 million worth of these clubs annually.[2]

In 1994 King Cobra oversized irons became the best selling irons in golf, making Cobra synonymous with oversized irons. The company was acquired in 1996 by American Brands Inc. (later known as Fortune Brands) and was grouped together under the Acushnet Company umbrella along with the company's other golf brands, Titleist, FootJoy, and Pinnacle Golf. In 2010, Cobra was acquired by Puma SE.[5]

In 1999 Cobra introduced Dista golf balls intended to maximize distance for all players with multiple swing speed models offered.[4]  "[In 2005] Cobra drivers rank No. 1 in Overall Driver Satisfaction Ratings in both 2003 and 2004, according to Darrell Survey U.S. Consumer Research, a leading independent golf consumer research company."[4]  Cobra continues to make advancements in their clubs and golf balls, and their sponsored tour players continue to thrive using these new products.

Marketing[edit]

Between 1989 and 1993, the company grew from $20 million to $56 million in annual sales thanks to aggressive marketing that included endorsements from golfing greats Hale Irwin, Beth Daniel and Greg Norman.[2] Cobra had a successful relationship with former world number one Greg Norman.[6] Since 2009, the most well known face of Cobra Puma golf clubs and apparel is Rickie Fowler, most known for his bright orange shirt color. [7]

Puma acquisition[edit]

German company Puma acquired all of Cobra from the Acushnet Company in 2010, fitting golfers with clothing, shoes and equipment for the sport.[8]

In February 2014, Cobra Golf signed a multi-year partnership[9] with the PGA Tour's Honda Classic, making it one of the lead sponsors of the event.

In 2016 Cobra Golf partnered with Flying Tee, and will provide the official equipment and apparel.[10] Flying Tee provides a fun golfing environment similar to the well known Topgolf, but they also provide simulated course play.[11]

In 2019 Cobra was named by Golf Digest the best game improvement iron. In November that year, five-time PGA TOUR winner Jason Dufner, signed a multi-year partnership with Cobra before playing in the 2019 Mayakoba Golf Classic.[12]

Products[edit]

Cobra markets a full range of golf clubs including; drivers, fairways, hybrids, irons, wedges, utility irons, etc.[13]

Sponsorships[edit]

Cobra has maintained endorsement deals with many professional golfers playing on the leading tours, including Bryson DeChambeau, Rickie Fowler and Lexi Thompson.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Bob Philion profile
  2. ^ a b c O'Brien, Brendan. "The History of Cobra Golf". GolfLink. Retrieved 2019-12-04.
  3. ^ Lal, Rajiv (September 2005). "Callaway Golf Company" (PDF). Harvard Business School.
  4. ^ a b c "History". www.cobragolf.com. Retrieved 2019-12-04.
  5. ^ Johnson, Mike (May 5, 2016). "Here's what happened with 10 equipment company acquistions [sic]". Golf Digest.
  6. ^ "COBRA Golf teams up with Greg Norman". January 23, 2014. Archived from the original on March 13, 2014.
  7. ^ Jarvinen, Jani (2012). "MARKETING THROUGH CORPORATE SPONSORSHIP" (PDF). Turku University of Applied Sciences.
  8. ^ PUMA. "PUMA Acquires Equipment Brand Cobra Golf". www.prnewswire.com. Retrieved 2019-12-04.
  9. ^ Charlie Lemay (February 19, 2014). "Cobra signs multi-year agreement with Honda Classic".
  10. ^ "FlyingTee Announces Partnership with COBRA PUMA GOLF". ionOKlahoma online. Retrieved 2019-12-04.
  11. ^ Trolia, Emily (May 2019). "FORE YOUR INFORMATION: A FINANCIAL ANALYSIS OF THE GOLF INDUSTRY" (PDF). University of Mississippi.
  12. ^ "Free agent no longer: Dufner signs equipment deal with Cobra Golf". PGATour. Retrieved 2019-12-04.
  13. ^ "Cobra Golf - Golf Clubs, Cobra Golf Clubs, KING F9 SPEEDBACK, KING LTD, King F8, Puma Golf". www.cobragolf.com. Retrieved 2019-12-04.

External links[edit]