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Titleist Hits The Green On Its First Day Of Trading

Titleist GOLF Hits The Green On Its First Day Of Trading

Acushnet Holdings Corp. NYSEGOLF, parent company of golf equipment leader Titleist, officially launched its IPO Friday amid a trying time for the industry.

Announced last year in November, the Titleist offering shocked many, coming at a time when the majority of the sentiment around the industry was that the game was in major decline.

Its no doubt that golf has had a difficult time attracting the next generation of players; millennials are known to have a distaste for the sport. Nike Inc NKE 0.25% dropped out the equipment business, giving up ~$175 million in equipment sales.

Adidas AG (ADR) ADDYY 0.4% is trying to sell its golf segment Taylor-Made as many in the industry have tried different approaches to attract a new demographic to the game. Tiger Woods' absence from the sport has certainly played a major impact in Golf’s rise and fall.

Titleist Joins Callaway In The Market

Titleist joins competitor Callaway Golf Co ELY as the only pure golf plays in the market and will be an important gauge of the industry as a whole. Golf equipment sales have been down recently, but there are some bright spots.

“I think it is a good a business to be in, I don’t think it is a growing business at the moment, but rounds played has actually trended up, unit sales are down, average selling prices are up” said Callaway CFO, Robert Julian, in an exclusive interview with Benzinga.

Despite the cautious sentiment surrounding golf, Callaway has actually outperformed the S&P 500 this year by a wide margin.

Golf Stock Performance, Asia Remains A Key Market

Golf is still very popular in Asia, with Japan in particular being a key market for the equipment manufacturers and South Korea also remaining an important market. Fila Korea previously owned Acushnet and still has a large stake in the Acushnet IPO.

With Callaway set to release its Q3 earnings next Wednesday and Titleist IPO underway, a lot more color on the state of the industry will soon be here.

At last check, Acushnet shares were up 1.7 percent on its first day of trading.

© 2016 Benzinga.com. Benzinga does not provide investment advice. All rights reserved.