PGA Tour merges with Saudi Arabia-backed rival LIV Golf to form new global golf entity

The world of professional golf as we know it has now officially changed.

On Tuesday the PGA Tour announced groundbreaking news that it formed a new commercial entity with the goal of unifying golf with the help of Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund.

From the PGA Tour’s release: “The parties have signed an agreement that combines PIF’s golf-related commercial businesses and rights (including LIV Golf) with the commercial businesses and rights of the PGA Tour and DP World Tour into a new, collectively owned, for-profit entity to ensure that all stakeholders benefit from a model that delivers maximum excitement and competition among the game’s best players.”

PIF will make an investment into the unnamed new entity “to facilitate its growth and success” and will initially be the exclusive investor alongside the PGA Tour, LIV Golf and the DP World Tour. PIF will also have the exclusive right to further invest in the new entity, including a right of first refusal on any new capital that may be invested in the entity.

The PGA Tour will appoint a majority of the Board and hold a majority voting interest in the new entity. The Board of Directors of the new entity will include Al-Rumayyan as Chairman and Monahan as Chief Executive Officer.

With Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund as its sole funder, LIV Golf has long been criticized as a way for the Kingdom to sportswash its human rights record. Saudi Arabia has been accused of wide-ranging human rights abuses, including politically motivated killings, torture, forced disappearances and inhumane treatment of prisoners. Not to mention members of the royal family and Saudi government were accused of involvement in the murder of Jamal Khashoggi, a Saudi journalist and Washington Post columnist.

The upstart circuit led by Greg Norman and financially backed by Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund has been a thorn in the Tour’s side for more than a year now, and the merge would end all pending litigation between the sides.

The release stated the PGA Tour, DP World Tour and LIV Golf would “work cooperatively and in good faith” to establish a fair process for players who desire to re-apply for tour membership following the 2023 season.

“After two years of disruption and distraction, this is a historic day for the game we all know and love,” said PGA Tour Commissioner Jay Monahan. “This transformational partnership recognizes the immeasurable strength of the PGA Tour’s history, legacy and pro-competitive model and combines with it the DP World Tour and LIV – including the team golf concept – to create an organization that will benefit golf’s players, commercial and charitable partners and fans. Going forward, fans can be confident that we will, collectively, deliver on the promise we’ve always made – to promote competition of the best in professional golf and that we are committed to securing and driving the game’s future.

“Today is a very

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By: Adam Woodard
Title: PGA Tour merges with Saudi Arabia-backed rival LIV Golf to form new global golf entity
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Published Date: Tue, 06 Jun 2023 14:19:18 +0000

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