From Infogalactic: the planetary knowledge core
Jump to: navigation, search
Topgolf International, Inc.
Industry Sports Entertainment
Founded 2000 in Watford, United Kingdom
Founder Steve Jolliffe & Dave Jolliffe
Headquarters Dallas, Texas, United States
Number of locations
24 (21 in the U.S., 3 in the U.K.)
As of 2015/07/28
Area served
United States and England
Key people
Kenneth A. May (CEO)
William Davenport CPA (CFO)
Revenue $95.2 million (2013)
Website Topgolf website

Topgolf International, Inc. (also known as Topgolf) is a sports entertainment facility headquartered in Dallas, Texas with locations throughout the United States and the UK.


Topgolf features a golf game that uses microchip technology inside golf balls that are shot into several targets with real clubs to score points. Players tee off from a driving bay onto a landscaped outfield with targets ranging in distance from 20 to 215 yards. Players receive instant feedback on how far they have hit a shot and are allocated points based on distance and accuracy.


In 1997, Steve and Dave Jolliffe were on a driving range in North London wondering why they weren't getting answers to what they considered fairly simple questions: How far is the ball going? How close to the hole is it landing? How can we make this more fun? Within half an hour, the three created a plan to give the driving range a 21st-century makeover. World Golf Systems was set up that year to develop and capitalize on its invention – the I.D. Ball System.[1] Over the next three years, the team invested $10 million developing the technology, golf centers, and tracking centers needed to make use of the idea. The team came up with a points-based target game that could be franchised and earn the original business royalty fees.[2]

In 2000, the Jolliffe brothers opened the first Topgolf location in Watford, just outside London. The Watford location had revenues of £4 million (approximately $6.3 million in today’s dollars) in its first year of operation.[3] The brothers saw how substantial the business was performing, a second English location was opened in 2004 in Chigwell, England.

In May 2004, World Golf Systems issued the license to develop Topgolf in North America and Canada to Golf Entertainment International Limited.

In 2005, Topgolf made its international debut in Alexandria, Virginia.

Early on, players had to scan each RFID ball to imprint their "signature." However, with barcodes deteriorating and technology advancing since 1997, the barcodes were replaced by micro-chipped balls produced by Callaway Golf, which was an early investor in the company.[4]

Over the next nine years since 2005, Topgolf returned to the UK in Surrey followed by, once again, returning to the United States in Wood Dale, Illinois; Dallas, Texas; Allen, Texas; Katy, Texas; San Antonio, Texas; Austin, Texas; Scottsdale, Arizona; Alpharetta, Georgia; Spring, Texas; and The Colony, Texas.

On November 1, 2006, Golf Entertainment International Limited, the exclusive licensee for Topgolf Game Centers in the United States, announced that it entered into a Preferred Partner Agreement with Callaway Golf Company, one of the world’s leading golf equipment companies. Pursuant to the arrangement, Golf Entertainment International granted Callaway Golf preferred marketing and promotion rights at its Topgolf Game Centers.[5]

At the start of 2011, the Jolliffe brothers sold TopGolf International for more than $28 million to a group of private investors. Callaway Golf is among them, as is Tom Dundon, chief executive officer of auto-loan giant Santander Consumer USA Holdings. By 2017, Topgolf plans to have 50 U.S. locations.[6] Australia, Dubai, France, Russia, South Africa, and Spain are also charted to get centers.[7]


There are currently six different game versions available to be played at Topgolf with more being introduced in 2009.

Game Description
Topgolf Score points by hitting balls into any of the 10 targets.
TopPressure Aim for the Yellow target. Score points by hitting as many of the nine segments as you can.
TopChip Aim for and hit the Red, Yellow, and Green targets.
TopShot Hit the targets at four consecutive distances. You pick the starting point.
TopPractice Don't play for points. Simply benefit from exact yardage information given after each shot.
TopDrive Aim for the Pink and Black targets.


There are currently eighteen Topgolf locations, fifteen in the United States with ten under construction, and three in the United Kingdom.[8]

United States



  1. "World Golf Systems Group plc". TopGolf. Retrieved November 13, 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  2. "Micro-chip golf ball exports soar". April 11, 2006. Retrieved November 13, 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  3. Kaufmann, Martin (July 23, 2012). "Topgolfs Successful Mix: Swings, Suds, and Socializing". Retrieved November 13, 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  4. Robson, Dan (July 8, 2011). "Driving 'golf entertainment' into the future". Retrieved November 13, 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  5. "TopGolf Game Centers Begin Marketing Partnership With Callaway Golf Company". November 1, 2006. Retrieved November 13, 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  6. Kerr-Dineen, Luke (April 23, 2014). "Not Your Grandfather's Driving Range". Retrieved November 13, 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  7. Feldmeier, Julia (October 2, 2006). "TopGolf Transforms the Typical Driving Range". Retrieved November 13, 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>