The Premier Golf League announced its plans for a series of events in February that would partner with multiple tours, offer big payouts, and grant league members ownership stakes.
The PGL, which is distinct from the Saudi Arabia-backed and Greg Norman-led LIV Golf Invitational Series, which aims to compete with the Tour, is stepping up its attempts to meet with and attract PGA Tour players.
Professional golf is at a “historic crossroads,” according to the letter, which was received by Golfweek and is dated for Thursday, May 5. It is addressed to PGA Tour Voting Members.
“The LIV Golf Investments (LIV)-funded and-owned ‘International Series’ poses an existential threat not only to the PGA Tour’s dominance, but also to its model.” “No amount of purse rejigging, head-burying, ban-threatening, alliance-making, or’moving-on’ will derail it,” read the letter signed by World Golf Group Limited, which not-so-subtly criticizes the PGA Tour and Jay Monahan for comments that the Tour was “moving on” from rival leagues, as well as threats to ban players who play for multiple leagues.
The letter added, “LIV’s outstanding format (based on our very own, original, PGL model) is capable of generating $10 billion-plus in equity value.” “As a result, LIV is willing to pay more than $400 million to demonstrate the model’s genius over the course of eight events.”
Following that, the letter lays out two possibilities for PGA Tour players:
A) Own 50% of the PGL and make $20 million each ($2 million upfront), with a further $1 billion in value to be shared among members of the Korn Ferry and DP World Tours, or B) Do nothing and let LIV generate that value, while the two oldest tours consider a full merger that would benefit neither membership.
McIlroy presented the suggestion to the board, and the plan was debated with PAC members during the Arnold Palmer Invitational and Players Championship, according to the Fire Pit Collective.
Kevin Kisner, whose tenure on the PAC expired in 2022, said, “Their idea has been researched and scrutinized by an independent company to test its practicality.” “All of us were given the results.” The (consultants) compared it to having to perform financially for 19 Ryder Cups per year after reviewing the (PGL’s) finances and the proposal closely. “It’s not possible.”
The letter mentions Rory McIlroy’s comparable remark and brands both players’ comments “bullshit,” claiming that the consultants, Allen & Co., have never spoken to the PGL and lack access to the necessary information “to establish an appropriate value.”
“As a member of the tour, I instruct you to obtain and publish an independent appraisal of the PGL Proposals #playerpower #transparency,” it says, adding that if 70 or more players do it, “it will happen.”
“You should not fear the anger of (PGA Tour commissioner) Jay Monahan because he is not on the Policy Board and works for you,” the letter concludes. You should make use of your legal options. Despite the fact that it is referred to as “your” PGA Tour, you do not own it (nor will you own LIV or the Super Golf League). You might be able to buy half of the PGL.”
To cut a long tale short, the ball is now in the hands of the players, who will shortly have to pick where they want to tee it up.