Greg Norman Named CEO of Saudi-Backed Golf Series
Golf legend Greg Norman has been named CEO of the new Saudi-backed golf series on the Asian Tour.
Norman will serve as the head of LIV Golf Investments, which has committed $200 million over ten years to the Asian Tour to back this new series.
“This is only the beginning. LIV Golf Investments has secured a major capital commitment that will be used to create additive new opportunities across worldwide professional golf. We will be a cooperative and respectful supporter of the game at every level, and today’s announcement alongside the Asian Tour is the first example of that,” said Norman in a press release.
The announcement comes days after Golfweek reported that Norman would be the head of this new league.
It also follows a new 10-year partnership between the Asian Tour and Golf Saudi, organizers of the Saudi International Tournament, which was recently booted from the European Tour lineup.
Saudi-backed Golf Series
According to the press release, the 10-event series will be added to the Asian Tour schedule starting in 2022 with events across Asia, the Middle East and Europe.
“I have been a staunch supporter and believer in playing and developing golf in Asia for more than four decades. The Asian Tour is a sleeping giant and we share ambition to grow the series and unlock what we believe is significant untapped potential. We see our promotion of these new events as a vital first step in supporting emerging markets, creating a new platform, rich with playing opportunities that create valuable player pathways,” said Norman.
Further details on the new series, including a reveal of the brand and series name, will follow in the near future.
PGA Tour Controversy
Rumors of a new Saudi-backed tour have been swirling for a couple of years now.
It was initially called the Premier Golf League, then the Super Golf League, and now it appears they are rebranding for a third time.
The PGA Tour, USGA, Masters, European Tour and other entities have all come out over the last couple of years and said they do not support a new golf league, and players will be punished for defecting.
“Our governance system has been driven by our players and our board, and we have regulations in place that allow us to protect the interests of our media partners, our sponsors and all of our constituents, and if we got to that point in time, we would take measures to vigilantly protect this business model,” Tour commissioner Jay Monahan said in early 2020.
The other part of this controversy is the Saudi International tournament, which is now funded by the same people who are launching this new golf league.
According to Golfweek, up to eight PGA Tour players, including Dustin Johnson, have asked the PGA Tour for permission to go and play the Saudi International.
It will be interesting to see what happens with that now.
About LIVE Golf Investments
LIV Golf Investments is a newly formed company, with group companies in the USA and UK, with Asian offices to follow. Its remit is to holistically improve the health of professional golf on a truly global scale and support existing stakeholders to help unlock the sports’ untapped potential. Greg Norman is the first and founding CEO of LIV Golf Investments. PIF, one of the world’s largest sovereign wealth funds with a diverse international investment portfolio, is the majority shareholder in LIV Golf Investments.