Stephen McAllister, a two-time European Tour winner and successful businessman, is to join Scottish Golf on a consultancy basis to help open up new markets and explore wider commercial opportunities.
The 55-year-old is to assist the governing body on a commercial level through his business contacts around the world and help exploit the value of Scotland’s position as ‘The Home of Golf’, working closely with Scottish Golf CEO Blane Dodds.
A key objective for Dodds, who has now been in post for seven months, is increasing income from a wider number of sources to invest it back into the game and support affiliated clubs, performance and participation programmes.
McAllister, who won the Atlantic Open and the KLM Dutch Open on the European Tour in 1990, combines playing Senior Tour golf with his business interests.
Since the 1990’s, the Scot has been managing corporate golf days and events on behalf of clients across a number of sectors. Having been an investor and part of the management team who designed and operated Mearns Castle Golf Academy in 2002, McAllister moved on five years later to rebuild his corporate client base, today continuing to develop his corporate golf business in the UK and overseas.
The Paisley-born player will now seek to utilise his extensive business network in the domestic market to grow commercial partnerships for Scottish Golf, while aiming to attract new overseas investment from the likes of North America, the UAE and China, tapping into the affinity for Scotland.
McAllister, speaking at today’s announcement at Haggs Castle Golf Club in Glasgow, said: “These are exciting times and I very much look forward to working with Scottish Golf. I’ve known Blane for a number of years and we’ve discussed various opportunities, as he has very ambitious growth plans to reshape Scottish Golf.
“I share his ambition and enthusiasm as I feel I can bring various connections to Scottish Golf at a high corporate level and also look at how we can bring international investment through individuals with a passion for The Home of Golf.
“The foreign attitude towards golf in Scotland is very strong, notably for links courses. Golf has its challenges right now, but when I travel abroad I don’t see negativity.
“In America, for example, there is a strong Scottish flavour and there are great opportunities. Equally, there are Scots working in the golf industry overseas, including PGA pros, who we could tap into. We have some really well-connected people to talk to.”
Dodds added: “Stephen has enjoyed a great career on and off the course and it’s about bringing his qualities together with ourselves to be of mutual benefit.
“Stephen has an excellent record and experience of dealing with corporate clients at the highest level and he’s going to be introducing more people to us for events and commercial opportunities.
“We need to open our horizons to other income streams and I believe what we have in Scotland is of high value. Growing income will allow us to invest back into the game and provide more support to clubs, attract new audiences to golf and harness the potential of our talented players.”
Photos: Craig Watson