Dean Snell, Founder of Snell Golf and creator of many of the leading golf balls of the past 25 years, was among the winners in the 24th edition of the ING Industry Honors, announced at the PGA Merchandise Show.
Called by many the “Academy Awards of the Golf Industry,” the ING Industry Honors program recognizes outstanding achievement in the golf business. The non-profit, media-based networking organization International Network of Golf conducts the awards program.
Nominees in 11 categories are submitted throughout the year from anyone in the golf industry. Sub-committees that include experts in each category then trim the entries to the top three in each category. ING members then vote electronically to determine the winners, who are announced and recognized at the Industry Honors Presentation Press Conference. Holly Geoghegan of Golf Marketing Services is the committee chair.
In his long and storied career Snell has been involved in the creation of golf ball successes like Titleist Pro V1 and TaylorMade Tour Preferred. In 2014, Snell decided to inject innovation into golf balls in another way – by reducing costs and going to a direct-to-consumer sales model through Snell Golf that allows him to provide Tour-level performance at a fraction of the price. 2016 saw Snell Golf explode with record sales growth and amazing brand recognition among golfers.
The Product Ingenuity for Golf Equipment categories saw two companies top the voting in back-to-back years. The TaylorMade M2 driver won in the Market Leaders division following the M1 victory a year ago. And Knuth Golf took top honors in the Emerging Companies division with its High Heat 3-Wood after winning the category last year with its High Heat driver.
The Player Development category winner was Topgolf, the highly successful global sports entertainment community with 30 venues serving 12.2 million guests annually and introducing new golfers to the game.
A complete list of winners is below. The presentation took place Thursday in the ING Hospitality Room, and was sponsored by PGA Golf Exhibitions. For more information, visit www.inggolf.com.
WINNERS & NOMINEES – 2016 ING INDUSTRY HONORS
Winner: Dean Snell, Founder and CEO of Snell Golf, Inc.
Other Finalists: Chip Brewer, CEO, Callaway Golf; PGA of America
Winner: Frogger/Revolution Golf
Other Finalists: Power Package/Golf Pulp Media; Tathata Golf
Other Finalists: International Women’s Golf Day; Youth On Course
Print Advertising – Products & Services
Winner: Callaway – “A Champion Is Born”
Other Finalists: True Temper Project X; TaylorMade Golf
Print Advertising – Travel & Real Estate
Winner: Bandon Dunes – “Golf As It Was Meant To Be.”
Other Finalists: Golf Cape Breton; Turning Stone Resort
Product Ingenuity – Emerging Companies-Golf Equipment
Winner: Knuth Golf High Heat 3-Wood
Other Finalists: Golphin Clubs; Snell Golf Balls
Product Ingenuity – Emerging Companies-Misc. Products
Winner: Zero Friction DistancePro GPS Glove
Other Finalists: Biion Golf Shoes; GolfBuddyLD2 GPS Watch
Product Ingenuity – Emerging Companies-Technology
Winner: Arccos 360 Shot Tracker
Other Finalists: 18Birdies; Golf GameBook
Product Ingenuity – Emerging Companies-Training Products
Winner: Swingclick PLUS
Other Finalists: Laser Putt; Swing Wizzard
Product Ingenuity – Market Leaders
Winner: TaylorMade M2 Driver
Other Finalists: Cleveland Smart Sole 2.0 Wedges; PING Crossover
Winner: PGA Tour Superstores: “Just Another Sunday” – with Jason Day
Other Finalists: AT&T; Puma