It takes the ferocity of a Tiger to get to the top of this membership organization. The PGA TOUR, which includes Tiger Woods and golf's other top players, puts on more than 100 official events per year that offer more than $350 million in prize money. Its major championships are the Masters, US Open, British Open, and PGA Championship. The group also oversees the Champions Tour, for players 50 and older, and the Nationwide Tour, for emerging players. The PGA TOUR is separate from the PGA of America, which consists mostly of club pros, although most tour players maintain membership in both groups. The PGA TOUR was formed in 1968 by a splinter faction of the PGA of America.
Like other sporting organizations and leagues, the TOUR depends heavily on sponsorships and fees from broadcasters to generate revenue. The recession and the financial crisis have put pressure on the sports world as many of the major sponsors have either reined in spending or been forced to pull out of sponsoring events altogether.
Golf, however, continues to be supported by advertisers and broadcasters thanks to the popularity of the sport with fans. The PGA TOUR has six-year broadcasting deals with both CBS and NBC that started in 2007; cable sports network The Golf Channel has a 15-year deal to carry early rounds of more than 30 tournaments. In 2011, the PGA TOUR landed a three year marketing deal with General Electric, making GE an official sponsor of the PGA TOUR, Champions Tour, and Nationwide Tour. The PGA TOUR also benefits from licensing agreements with more than 50 golf equipment makers. – less
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