Q3 Financial Reports: Callaway and Acushnet – Key Takeaways
- Callaway sales top $988 million in Q3 with $38.5 million in net profit.
- The new Topgolf Callaway Brands expects to hit nearly $4 billion in sales in 2022.
- Acushnet Q3 sales top $558 million with nearly $52 million in profit.
- Acushnet projects 2022 sales to approach $2.25 billion.
Golf’s two biggest publicly traded companies officially have closed the books on 2022’s Q3. And it doesn’t take a financial wizard to realize Acushnet and the newly rebranded Topgolf Callaway Brands aren’t playing the same game as PING, TaylorMade, COBRA or anyone else, for that matter.
You can’t even say they’re playing chess while everyone else is playing checkers. It’s more like Acushnet and Topgolf Callaway are playing three-dimensional chess in while everyone else is playing Chutes and Ladders.
Or Old Maid.
Or Go Fish.
Friends, it ain’t even that close.
As with every story we do on the Big Dogs’ financials, we’ll explore beyond the headlines to explain just how these two behemoths are doing. If you like numbers, it’s fascinating stuff. But it does require our standard disclaimer: We are not nor do we claim to be financial experts or investment counselors. We’re really just like you. We love golf (including the business side) and we like to read.
Q3 Financial Reports: TopGolf Callaway Rides the Wave
Earlier this year, Callaway rebranded itself as Topgolf Callaway Brands. After a year-plus of full ownership of Topgolf, it’s pretty clear why. Callaway agreed to merge with Topgolf in late 2020, finalizing the deal in March 2021. In its 2020 annual report. Callaway posted full-year sales of $1.6 billion. Granted, it was a pandemic year, but those numbers were just a tick off 2019’s non-pandemic numbers.
To put the Topgolf’s impact into perspective, Callaway’s Q3 2022 sales topped $988 million.
I’m sorry. Topgolf Callaway Brands‘ sales topped $988 million.
For three freaking months.
“Our record third-quarter results underscore the strength of our business and competitive positioning across all segments,” CEO Chip Brewer told shareholders last week. “The long-term trends driving interest and engagement in the modern golf ecosystem continued, highlighted by increased traffic at our Topgolf venues and strong sales in our golf equipment and active lifestyle businesses.”
In this new modern golf ecosystem, all three of the Topgolf Callaway business units are expected to reach unprecedented sales numbers this year. Topgolf itself is expected to exceed $1.56 billion in sales. Golf Equipment is projected to hit $1.4 billion and Active Lifestyle (think TravisMathew, Jack Wolfskin and Ogio) is expected to top a billion all on its own.
As a result, Topgolf Callaway is revising its annual sales projections upward to $3.985 billion for 2022. An extra holiday party or two at a Topgolf just might push that number north of $4 billion.
Q3: The Deets
That $988.5 million in sales represents a 15.4-percent increase over last year’s record-breaking Q3. Additionally, Topgolf Callaway is posting a $38.5-million net profit for the quarter compared to a $16-million GAAP (Generally Accepted Accounting Principles) net loss last year. At that level, quarterly losses are usually related to interest charges or other oddities that need to be written off. The company did report a $26-million non-GAAP net profit last year.
This year’s non-GAAP quarterly net profit is $44.6 million.
Specifically, Topgolf revenues grew 26 percent over last year to $413.5 million. Active Lifestyle sales topped $278 million for the quarter (up more than 19 percent) but Golf Equipment sales increased by only 2.5 percent to just under $300 million.
That sounds like a head-scratcher but there are mitigating circumstances. Topgolf Callaway says club sales actually dropped more than three percent in Q3. That was more than offset, however, by a 25-percent increase in ball sales which topped $75 million for the quarter. The mitigating circumstances, according to the company, include increased freight expenses and other inflationary pressures.
The biggest mitigator, however, is foreign currency exchange.
Q3 Financial Reports: The Constant Currency Bugaboo
If you’re American and have traveled overseas lately, you no doubt enjoyed an incredible exchange rate. The dollar is very strong right now against foreign currency. That’s terrific if you’re a tourist. It’s kind of a drag, however, if you’re a U.S.-based manufacturer with significant sales in other countries.
According to Topgolf Callaway, changes in foreign currency exchange rates had a $50-million negative impact on Q3 revenues, most of it hitting the Golf Equipment division. In order to keep shareholders from freaking out, companies will often paint a brighter picture by using Constant Currency.
Constant Currency essentially fixes the currency exchange rate to the previous year. In TopGolf Callaway’s case, that 2.5-percent increase in golf equipment sales would actually be 9.3 percent using Constant Currency. Without currency fluctuations, the company says equipment sales results would have been “meaningfully higher.”
Year-to-date figures show Topgolf revenues topping $1.13 billion with segment profit of more than $74 million. Club sales sit at just under $1 billion for the first nine months of the year (up 11 percent over last year) and ball sales are at $257 million for the year, up 27 percent over last year. Apparel sales are at $457 million (up 36 percent) and Gear and Accessory sales (hats, gloves, bags, etc.) are at $332 million (up 25 percent).
Q3 Financial Reports: Acushnet Cruises Along
Acushnet is watching Topgolf Callaway’s taillights getting smaller in the distance. But where Topgolf Callaway is a full-on golf lifestyle and entertainment “ecosystem,” Acushnet is a golf brand. And it keeps cruising along.
Acushnet’s Q3 sales topped $558 million, up seven percent over last year or 13.5 percent in Constant Currency (Acushnet is reporting everything with a Constant Currency number). The company is reporting a Q3 profit of nearly $52 million which is up nearly 32 percent over Q3 of 2021.
“Acushnet delivered strong third-quarter results, with Constant Currency sales up over 13 percent and growth in all segments,” says CEO David Maher. “While our business is not immune to currency headwinds and input cost increases, we are confident that our ongoing investments in product development, supply chain excellence and innovation will help us deliver long-term value for our shareholders.”
Year-to-date sales top $1.82 billion, up 5.5 percent over the first nine months of last year (10.5 percent in Constant Currency). Year-to-date profit stands at $199 million. That’s down three percent from last year. Acushnet says that’s due to a decrease in income from operations.
For the quarter, Acushnet is reporting $154 million in golf club sales. That’s a nearly 20-percent increase in Constant Currency. Year-to-date club sales stand at $479 million (up 12.5 percent in Constant Currency).
Acushnet continues to lead the world in ball sales with more than $181 million in Q3 sales. That’s a 13-percent Constant Currency increase. For the year, however, ball sales stand at $546 million which is only a four-percent Constant Currency increase. Acushnet has been struggling with raw material shortages for its ball operations. The Q3 results indicate those shortages are waning.
Titleist golf gear sales were up 27 percent (35 percent in Constant Currency) in Q3 to $59 million while FootJoy sales reached $132 million. That represents a 4.5-percent decrease in sales due to foreign currency issues. In Constant Currency, it’s a 2.5-percent increase. Year-to-date, however, FootJoy sales are at $507 million which is up double digits from 2021.
You have to give both Acushnet and Topgolf Callaway credit for one thing. Each identifies growth due to volume increases versus growth due to price increases. For example, Acushnet says its modest increase in ball sales year-to-date is primarily due to higher average selling prices. The increase in club sales, however, is due to higher volumes of SM9 wedges, Phantom X putters and the new TSR drivers and fairways.
Like Topgolf Callaway, Acushnet is revising its full-year sales projections. The company now expects sales to reach as high as $2.25 billion by year-end, a slight uptick from its Q2 projections.
Q3 Financial Reports: What Can We Learn?
Acushnet and Topgolf Callaway are golf’s two biggest dogs. And if you know dogs, you know the biggest dogs take the biggest dumps. Or, in this case, show the biggest profits. Interestingly, however, the biggest dog in Q3 did not show the biggest profit.
Acushnet earned nearly $52 million on $558 million in sales. Topgolf Callaway posted a $38.5 million profit on $988.5 million in sales. But before you conclude Acushnet must be a leaner, more efficient operation, consider the nature of the two companies. Topgolf Callaway has, in the past several years, acquired, merged with or absorbed not only Topgolf but TravisMathew, Ogio and Jack Wolfskin. It also bought into Five Iron Golf, an indoor golf simulator/custom fitting/dining chain.
Those acquisitions all cost money as does continued investment in new Topgolf venues. Acushnet, on the other hand, has only added KJUS apparel in recent years. If you take Topgolf out of the equation, Acushnet and Topgolf Callaway are remarkably similar companies. Callaway sells more clubs while Acushnet sells more balls. The companies are close in apparel, gear and accessory sales.
Of course, you can’t take Topgolf out of the equation. And Topgolf, along with Five Iron Golf, gives Topgolf Callaway more than just food, beverage and entertainment cash cows. They are, in fact, company stores positioned to custom fit and sell golf equipment directly to consumers.
That is a potential industry-wide game changer.