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Golfscape: Taking golf out of the late 1990s with inspiration from travel and technology

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Name: Golfscape
Industry/sector: Technology
Date founded: 2013
Founder: Raghad Mukhaimer and Michael Galasso
Location: London

Golfscape was founded by Raghad Mukhaimer and Michael Galasso, who recognised that the notion of booking golf online in real-time was non-existent in many countries across the world, despite the process being commonplace for flights, hotels and rentals for years now.

In their own words, in the few countries where the real-time golf experience bookings are available, “the experience is appalling and stuck in the late 90s”.

With a vision to bring the sport into the modern age for lovers of the sport, a design-first technological approach was adopted to solve the problem, resulting in development of a marketplace with real-time inventory of golf courses globally.

As the travel industry served as an inspiration, golf courses are encouraged to develop a profile page for their venue, inclusive of description, photos, maps, logo, weather and so on, providing golfers the type of insights and information to golfers that’s taken as a basic requirement from consumers seeking a beach holiday and so on.

In turn, Golfscape markets profiles to its global user base while the clients can allocate sellable inventory via a cloud-based extranet, which then becomes available for customers to book instantly in real-time.

The duo explained: “A golfer can then book an item – for example, 2.15pm on 15 October – and guarantee the reservation with their credit card. Both the golfer and course will receive an instant confirmation. The golfer would play and pay the booking amount to the golf course, and we collect our commission fee, which is 25 per cent of the booking amount, from each of our partner golf courses.”

The technology originally entered development in 2013 before debuting on the web in early 2014, and the service can now be found in 50 countries with over 100 locations worldwide, a widespread reach which Golfscape claims can’t be offered by any other company – let alone a young startup. 

“In many cases, we are connecting golf courses and destinations online for the first time ever,” the company said.

Some of the destinations that are new to online bookings in the sector include Bali, Da Nang and Bangkok, which means Golfscape is disrupting business for courses in the areas as they’re able to go beyond traditional approaches of using travel agents and tour operators to make sales, while payments are using processed indirectly through emails and faxed credit card forms.

Mukhaimer and Galasso, added: “Today, these courses are tapped into British technology and able to receive bookings online and in real-time, removing many barriers to new business.

“We have worked tirelessly to bring our service to market, and we strive to continue to grow and export our technology and brand to the entire world, opening up highly-sought golf tourism destinations while we have gathered over 40,000 fans on our social media platforms.”

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