Drive Shack and global golf star Rory McIlroy announced a partnership this past January relative to the former’s Puttery mini-golf concept, but the deal has yet to be consummated.
In a call with analysts on Friday, Drive Shack CEO Hana Khouri was asked about the highly-touted partnership that has gone radio silent since the initial announcement: she countered that her company was still “actively working” on the agreement, and that there were “no issues” with the agreement.
“It’s just taken a little bit longer than we had initially anticipated – or than I had initially anticipated,” said Khouri, who has been the company president since August 2019.
“Rory and his team are actively engaged with us on the first few Puttery venues. They’re excited about it. They remain excited about it.”
Khouri didn’t further elaborate, but said she hopes to provide more details in the next few weeks.
She continued, “We’re at the very kind of end of our process with that, with finalizing some of the agreement.”
Drive Shack on Friday reported Q1 revenue of $61 million – basically identical to Q1 of 2020 – with a loss of $7.875 million versus $14.843 million in Q1 of 2020. The company’s American Golf division of approximately 60 traditional golf courses accounted for $52.9 million of that revenue.
Khouri said Drive Shack plans to open its first Puttery venues in Dallas (TX) and Charlotte (NC) this summer. A third new location in Washington, D.C. is reportedly in the planning stages.
The company plans to open or nearly complete a total of seven new Puttery venues by the end of 2021.
“We’re also actively engaged with landlords and brokers in several prospective markets, and we expect an additional four venues to open, or be near completion, by the end of this year,” said, Khouri, who was the former Director of Operations at Topgolf.
“We really believe that Puttery is the best path forward for our near-term growth.”