A New Player In The Golf Industry

A New Player In The Golf Industry – Nirvana Golf Technologies L.L.C

Raelyn C. Johnson

Nirvana Golf Technologies L.L.C. is emerging as a new player on the course, creating high-quality custom golf equipment. The San Marcos, California-based minority-owned company was born out of an effort to develop a technical approach to golf while preserving traditional values and conformance to historical specifications.

Nirvana Golf is the brainchild of Tyrone Wallace, company founder, president, and CEO. Wallace, who has more than 30 years experience in executive and managerial positions, is an eager businessman, active in regional and local business development. Although a small company (an “extremely dedicated” staff of seven, headed by Wallace), it is projected that by the end of 2001, Nirvana will rake in revenues: close to $100,000. The firm certainly seems to be swinging in the right direction.

The story behind Nirvana’s establishment is an interesting one. “The original motivation was to offer women, juniors, and minorities the opportunity to experience golf in a nonintimidating atmosphere,” says Wallace. As the research needed to complete such a task began, one important fact stood out: Playing golf using improperly fitted equipment can put extreme physical strains on the body. Wallace felt the need to address this issue, and so the focus of his project shifted. With the assistance of a club designer, a new line of products was commissioned, primarily to reduce injuries associated with poor golf equipment and, secondly, to encourage women, juniors, and minorities to participate in the game. Wallace contends, “Those already aware of the joy of the game, and those yet to experience it, will now have the opportunity to enjoy the game without the physical strains and bad habits that using improperly fitted equipment can cause.”

With such clear motivation in mind, Nirvana originally started out with a group of eight owners, and eight years later, has evolved into its present productive management team. In addition to Wallace, the staff includes Tracy White-Thornton (vice president of operations), Karl Wilson (vice president of sales), Patricia Davis (vice president of human resources), T.A. EIAmin (national sales director), Allison Dunsmore (director of marketing), and Andrew Wallace (director of sales). This diverse team is composed of seasoned professionals with experience at corporations such as Ameritech, some of whom had previously worked together at other organizations. The Nirvana staff is truly a family.

The company was established with the investment of a large percentage of Wallace’s personal funds, and he estimates that to date he has invested more than $1.6 million. This type of financial commitment has allowed Nirvana to successfully file two U.S. patents, necessary trademarks, and to develop innovative golfing systems. Sales are expected to grow exponentially from infomercials and other marketing methods being undertaken. Future expansion is dependent upon additional investors and available funding.

The company is becoming a successful golf equipment provider, competing with the likes of Callaway, Taylor Made, Titleist, Nike, Ping, and others. Although these companies are similar to Nirvana in terms of manufacturing equipment, the young firm is in a class of its own with the versatility and overall performance of its products.

Nirvana introduced its preeminent line of customized irons, woods, and putters that give the novice golfer comfort, and the professional golfer the ultimate golfing experience. The first system, the TruLong [TM] I, features a driver that Nirvana’s marketing material proclaims was “inspired by the needs of long-drive competitors for a resilient, high-quality, customized club, and the ability to achieve ultimate distance and accuracy.” Although traditionally styled, the TruLong [TM] I Driver bears a modern flare with a unique green finish. Recognized for its 305cc forged titanium head and specially reinforced face, Nirvana guarantees a product that will not crack, peel, chip, bend, or spring in or spring out. The product also includes a club head with 51-, 53-, or 55-degree lie angles, and a professional grade graphite shaft of 44, 45, 46, 47 inches. Additionally, the TruLong [TM] I Driver is perfect for the golfer with a swing speed above 100 mph as it offers a design with an optimum surface hitting area, resulting in maximum consistency and increased club control.

In August of 2000, Nirvana introduced another product, the FeraLon [TM] System II, of irons, utility wedges, drivers, and metal woods. The irons and utility wedges are styled for optimum control and durability, thanks to the stainless steel alloy adjustable hosel design. They are perimeter weighted with a chambered sole, and feature a special face coating, harder than titanium or maraging steel. The irons also offer a choice in shafts, flexes, and tour-quality grips. The utility wedges are available in gap, lob, and sand styles, all featuring a nickel-fiber graphite shaft. With this in mind, the design of The FeraLon [TM] System II irons and utility wedges allow for range beyond the needs of any golfer. Because the system offers extended adjustability, Nirvana ensures golfers the most accurate fit. The FeraLon [TM] System II drivers and metal woods offer a stainless steel body with a maraging steel face. The face angle, loft, and weight are balanced to provide users with maximum, consistent power, increased club control, and optimum surface hitting area. Also worth noting is the product’s professional quality graphite shaft in a choice of flexes, and a professional quality tour-wrap grip. In addition to the drivers, Nirvana also offers customers the Swagie Putter, customized to one’s putting posture. This offset blade-style putter offers a soft-solid feel and smooth, consistent putting stroke. Strategically heel-toe weighted, lie angle adjustability is available in two-degree increments, from 64 to 76. Included in the Swagie Putter kit is a precision milled head with durable rubber insert, sets of lie inserts, a Swagie screw, a putter wrench, and, of course, instruction booklet.

Nirvana products incorporate proprietary designs that employ innovative technology and materials to develop what the company considers “a line of truly customized, traditionally styled, high-tech precision golf equipment,” all conformed to USGA regulations. The mission of the company is being achieved by heeding the advice of trainers and instructors on the importance of custom-tailored equipment. Company officials state, “This system, combined with innovative golf equipment, allows Nirvana to provide the golfing populace with technologically superior clubs, customized to their individual specifications.” The end result: Golfers no longer adjust to the equipment; the equipment adjusts to them. In fact, former NFL star (and Nirvana employee) Karl Wilson tested the products and concluded, “I have never seen a wood where you are able to change the club’s dynamics. Normally, a golf manufacturer will look at me and say, OK, he’s about 6’3″ tall and will probably need an extra long club. But [the problem is that] I have a wing span of about 6’8″, which means that my arms are too long for my body.” Wilson contends Nirvana lives up to the promise of custom fitting golf accessories, simply because it delivers a club that actually conforms to one’s golf game. “Now I have Nirvana Golf building clubs to fit my physique. So my natural swing remains the same.” Wilson is not the only one singing Nirvana’s praises. The clubs have showed up in the hands of professionals like Greg Walker, fourth in the world in long drive competitions with a personal best of 500 yards. The firm’s designs are steadily gracing the greens, including the Senior Tour and Long Drive circuits.

The company continues to operate with the following in mind, “The only way you can play your best is if you are using the proper equipment. At Nirvana, we are dedicated to bringing you the most technologically superior clubs that can be fitted to your needs. More enjoyment from the game and improved play is what Nirvana is all about.” For more information about Nirvana Golf Technologies or its traditionally styled, high-tech precision equipment, visit its Website at www.nirvanagolf.com, or call 800-275-9221 toll-free. It’s worth a “shot.”

COPYRIGHT 2001 Earl G. Graves Publishing Co., Inc.

COPYRIGHT 2001 Gale Group