Golf’s European Tour has entered an agreement with the European Tour Caddies Association (ETCA) to open new avenues of sponsorship potential for those working in the caddie profession.
For the first time, caddies will be able to form a collective commercial commodity, separate from the players they work with. This will begin from the 2020 season of the tour.
While there remains no provision for those within the profession to be sponsored on an individual basis, chairman of the ETCA, Sean Russell, was bullish about the development. He said: ‘’There is no question that the commercial value of caddies has been under-exploited over the years.
“But with caddies now being increasingly visible on television and across a wide range of social media platforms, we believe sponsors are starting to understand their importance and value from a commercial perspective.’’
Max Hamilton, head of commercial partnerships for the European Tour, said: “We believe that the story-telling opportunity this offers, alongside the associated media value, is significant and we look forward to progressing discussions with many potential partners to benefit our caddies from the 2020 season onwards.”
Sports marketing company Rocket Yard Sports are also involved in the deal. The brand already represents a number of European Tour players.
Rocket Yard’s director, Daryl Evans, said: “As a caddie, job security can be challenging at times so this opportunity will not only benefit them, but also those brands who desire a strong visible presence on media outlets across the many countries the European Tour plays every year.”
Further details on the sponsorship programme are expected to be released soon.