January 2024 - Celebration Issue

JANUARY 26, 2024

W elcome to an exclusive interview with Tim Boda, the Managing Director of Topgolf Thailand, and Stephanie Oukeo, the Director of Instruction. As leading figures in the golf industry, Tim and Stephanie have played instrumental roles in establishing Topgolf as the premier destination for golf and entertainment in Thailand. With their combined expertise and passion for the sport, they have successfully transformed the way people experience golf, combining cutting-edge technology, exceptional instruction, and a vibrant social atmosphere. In this interview, we delve into their journey, insights, and future plans for Topgolf in Thailand and beyond.

You opened Topgolf Megacity, the first Topgolf venue in Asia, one and a half years ago and it really has become talk of the town ever since. For those that might not be familiar with the concept, can you explain? In a few lines, we are a sports and entertainment complex that features an inclusive, high-tech golf game that everyone can enjoy. Pair this with an outstanding food and beverage menu, a caring and fun team of hosts that we call “playmakers”, all-weather playable hitting bays and all-day tunes that set the right mood. Topgolf has that energetic and positive hum that you can feel from the moment you walk through the door and that makes it just very hard not to have a good time. You could have built a traditional driving range or golf facility, why Topgolf? We are on a mission to make the beautiful game of golf a lot more accessible. With our gamified version of the sport and a culture that is fun, welcoming and unintimidating

we do exactly that. No membership is required, we have clubs for you and our dress code is “be you – feel good”. Breaking down the traditional country club barriers allows us to aim at 500,000 visitors in 2024 and 75% of these visitors will be holding a club in their hand for the very first time. This is something that benefits the entire golfing industry and many that have been introduced to golf by us then end up booking their local driving range and end up on the golf course. 500,000 visitors and 75% non- golfers is indeed impressive. So what’s in it for the experienced golfer, why do they come to Topgolf? All our bays are Toptracer supported and give players instant flight data (carry distance, ball curves and more). Golfers use Topgolf as a traditional driving range but also come with fellow golfers to compete on our virtual courses such as Pebble Beach or St Andrews whilst still having the experience to play the real distance into the range. During the

rainy season our all-weather venue hosts tournaments that could not take place on a traditional course. But what makes Topgolf also very special for experienced golfers is that now they have a place to come and enjoy with their non-golfing friends and it so often happens, that their non-golfing friends are the ones that get completely hooked and can’t stop swinging. Especially when they win at our popular Angry Bird games. Across media channels we constantly see activities being launched at Topgolf, it really seems like this venue never sleeps. What is hot and happening these days? Indeed a lot is happening all the time at Topgolf and we balance our activities and offers to have something that appeals to everyone across our wide range of player demographics. Some offers are always on, such as our Family Offer, where kids up to 12 years of age eat for free. The Valentine’s month of February sees the popular Pink Ball campaign return. We randomly mix dozens of pink balls into the ball dispensers daily and players that catch one can win countless luxury holidays and international flights. No skills required to partake in the Pink Ball promotion, just come out with friends, have fun and with a bit of luck find yourself wining a beach holiday. For the more skilled (or lucky) player we just upgraded our hole-in-one challenge with a range of new prizes. As you know we have 9 large outfield targets and if you hit the center cup of these targets it counts as a hole in one. Prizes range from complete Callaway golf sets to cash rewards totaling way beyond 250,000 Baht.

Exclusive Interview With Topgolf Thailand MD, Tim Boda and Director of Instruction, Stephanie Oukeo

10 THAILAND ONE Interview by Colin White Photographs by AX Media TH


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