2nd Swing Golf Files for Chapter 11I just found out that 2nd Swing Golf based in Minnetonka, Minnesota (my home state) declared Chapter 11 bankruptcy on August 23rd. Founded in 1997, they've expanded to more than 50 stores selling used golf equipment. It looks like the end for these guys. According to the Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal "The company has retained an investment banker Morris Anderson & Associates of Chicago, and is seeking a party to buy 2nd Swing as an ongoing business or handle a shutdown".
As cutthroat as golf retailing has become, these guys are probably going to fall victim and be liquidated. When a company announces they are trying to sell themselves or close down, it can't be good. They would have tried to unload the company privately and avoid the negative publicity associated with a bankruptcy.
If the financials were even halfway decent, a chain like Nevada Bobs, Edwin Watts, Austad's or even Dick's Sporting Goods would swoop them up in their time of need. Even for just the real estate.
Unfortunately, 2nd Swing couldn't pretty up their balance sheet when they tried to do an IPO in 2003 (three times actually) and just a year ago they laid off 1/3 of their corporate staff and closed about 20 stores. Their demise shouldn't come as a surprise with a flat golf retailing market for the last five years.
I alluded to the weak state of the industry in a previous March, 2006 posting Clubbuilding War Breaks Out as well as Dick's Sporting Goods opening its prototype standalone golf concept store.
I'll continue to explore the state of golf retailing in a future posting as well as on my podcast.