A major funding package for the redevelopment of public and private golf courses and driving ranges has been launched today by Mulpha Australia Limited (Mulpha), Avid Sports Management Pty Ltd (Avid Sports) and Golf Australia. “PlayGolf” is the first to market $60 million initiative, will provide a funding and operational solution to modernise facilities and increase participation of active and aspirational golfers across Australia.

Led by Mulpha, one of Australia’s largest real estate development and hospitality groups, PlayGolf Fund leverages its real estate development, hospitality, and operational expertise with the commercial golf industry knowledge and sporting relationships of Avid Sports and Golf Australia.

Mulpha CEO Mr Greg Shaw said: “The PlayGolf Fund partners have a shared goal to encourage more people regardless of age, gender or skill level to play and enjoy golf in a more accessible and entertaining way.

“In recent years we have seen many traditional public and member golf facilities and driving ranges struggle to find the combination of capital, development capability and specialised operational expertise to transition towards becoming more enticing integrated golf, hospitality and entertainment venues.

“Together with Avid Sports and Golf Australia, we have developed the PlayGolf Fund, a comprehensive solution for golf venues. We pleased to provide the significant investment to private and public facility owners in return for long term operational leases. The PlayGolf Fund will also entertain innovative concepts that are consistent with the objectives of the fund.”

Mulpha has committed up to $60 million to golf courses and driving ranges seeking to reposition existing sites to cater for a broader target audience and combine golfing facilities with hospitality and potentially other entertainment and leisure attractions. This investment will deliver state of the art facilities with widespread appeal in their communities.

Avid Sports Managing Director James Cooper said “Australian golf is broadening its focus in acknowledgement that all golf is golf. The PlayGolf Fund can assist in the delivery of far superior public facilities with less commercial and financial risk by bringing investment and creating alternative formats to appeal to the broader golfing community.”

The PlayGolf Fund is actively seeking expressions of interest to reinvigorate the participation, membership and utilisation of golf facilities on a sustainable and commercial basis. Applications are sought from local government authorities and membership-based clubs to investigate their projects and opportunities. The program offers a combined funding and operational solution for successful projects to become a reality for the benefit of Australia’s golf community and public interests.

Golf Australia CEO Mr James Sutherland said, “In Australia there are more than 400,000 active golf members and 800,000 social golfers. From first timers through to the most experienced of golfers, the social engagement, health benefits and outdoor experience of golf has provided much needed outdoor entertainment to more and more Australians over the past 18 months.

“Frankly, there has never been a more exciting time to be a part of Australian golf. The industry is aligned and working hard to make golf available to all, whether you like an on-course game, a simulator experience or a putt with family and friends. This partnership with Mulpha and Avid Sports will provide much needed capital to invest in golf infrastructure with the opportunity to increase participation by active and aspirational golfers across Australia. I can’t wait to see the ideas and the impact it has on what is already the second-most popular participation sport for adults in the country.”

Mr James Cooper, Managing Director of Avid Sports and PGA Member concluded: “Over the past 17 years Avid Sports has assisted more than 25 courses, driving ranges and golf clubs to look at different models to develop, enhance and sustain golf engagement. The PlayGolf Fund goes much further by offering the opportunity for local government authorities and membership-based clubs to fund projects that both cater to their existing golf users as well as foster growth amongst those who are developing their passion for golf.”

First round applications to access the $60 million funding package are due by 31 March 2022 with subsequent rounds considered thereafter. Details on PlayGolf Fund and how to apply can be found at www.playgolffund.com.au

For further information, or to arrange an interview with Mr Greg Shaw, Mr James Cooper or Mr James Sutherland, please contact:

About Golf Australia

Golf Australia is the governing body for the sport of golf in Australia, formed in 2006 after the Australian Golf Union (AGU) and Women’s Golf Australia (WGA) agreed to merge.

Their goal is to raise the level of interest and participation in the game from grassroots golfers through to the elite levels, spectators, volunteers and associated industry bodies. Key responsibilities include conducting national tournaments and championships including the Australian Opens, managing the Rules of Golf and the national handicap system, and developing programs and opportunities to engage as many people as possible into the game. Working in a commercial and inclusive manner with government, business, and community, Golf Australia ensures the value of golf is understood and supported in all policy and business decisions.


About Mulpha

Mulpha Group (‘Mulpha’) has over 30 years investment experience in Australia, with a team of over 65 professionals committed to long-term value creation. The Group has an extensive portfolio of real estate, property development, hospitality, education, retirement, private equity and debt assets, and also invests in some of the fastest growing and most vibrant economies in Australia, New Zealand, Malaysia and the UK.

In Australia, Mulpha’s investment portfolio includes the world renowned, resort-styled Sanctuary Cove, an integrated resort on the Gold Coast, Norwest Business and Residential Park in Sydney, flagship InterContinental Hotels in Sydney, Sanctuary Cove and Hayman Island, Bimbadgen and Emma’s Cottage in the Hunter Valley, Swing City in Norwest and The Hotel School in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Hayman Island. In New Zealand, Mulpha is the owner of Nesuto Stadium Hotel Auckland and is the developer of the award-winning Leisure Farm in Iskandar Malaysia. In the United Kingdom, Mulpha has a strategic investment in the London Marriott Grosvenor Square, a landmark hotel in the heart of London’s Mayfair district, while the Group asset manages a portfolio of hotels including Rydges Esplanade Resort Cairns, Sofitel Paris Le Faubourg, Sofitel Philippines Plaza, Novotel Century Hong Kong and Ibis North Point Hong Kong.


About Avid Sports

Established in 2003, Avid Sports is a boutique golf management company which prides itself on thinking outside the square to deliver industry leading advice and innovative management solutions to its clients. Since inception, Avid Sports has worked alongside some of Australia’s leading golf courses, property developers golf technology innovators to deliver more engaging, and sustainable golf initiatives. The Avid team combines decades of sports knowledge with innovative commercial strategies to achieve extraordinary outcomes for their clients. They have a proven ability to achieve results, having developed industry leading policy, procedures and systems which are customised to the local environment in which each facility operates.

Avid Sports recognise and value that no two facilities, clients or audiences are alike and that each business has a unique environment in which to operate. Avid Sports can immerse itself in the opportunity to truly understand that business, enabling them to achieve outcomes which far exceed all stakeholder expectations.

Avid Sports has the unique combination of sports knowledge and commercial acumen. We use these skills to create exceptional capabilities in the following services:

  • Golf Facility Planning, Development & Management
  • Golf Business Consulting
  • Golf Business Marketing
  • Golf facility Owners Representation
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