PGA Tour announces major update days after Jon Rahm's LIV Golf switch

In a memo dated 10 December, the PGA Tour announced a significant update to its members over negotiations with LIV Golf's primary backers.

Ben Smith's picture
Sun, 10 Dec 2023
PGA Tour announces major update days after Jon Rahm's LIV Golf switch

PGA Tour members have been given a 'significant' update two days after Jon Rahm was announced as a LIV Golf player. 

In a memo dated 10 December, the PGA Tour's policy board - which includes Tiger Woods and five other players - announced they were planning to advance discussions with a number of U.S.-based investors led by the owners of Liverpool Football Club in the Premier League. 

The policy board also outlined how, over the comings days, negotiations will also continue with Saudi Arabia's vast Public Investment Fund. 

The PIF is the $776 billion sovereign wealth fund that bankrolls the breakaway tour.

Since June 2022, the PIF has spent more than $2 billion creating the rival tour and signed major champions such as Rahm, Cameron Smith, Brooks KoepkaBryson DeChambeau, Phil Mickelson and Dustin Johnson

"Yesterday, we unanimously agreed to further negotiate with Strategic Sports Group (SSG), a consortium of U.S.-based professional sports team investors led by Fenway Sports Group," the memo stated. 

A full list of investors were also listed at the bottom of the memo, which was first obtained by the Golf Channel. 

Investors included the likes of billionaire businessman Arthur Blank.

Blank owns the NFL franchise the Atlanta Falcons and was among those to have purchased a team in Woods and Rory McIlroy's indoor golf league. 

The deadline for the PGA Tour's framework agreement with LIV's financiers is 31 December. 

The framework agreement involves the PGA Tour, European-based DP World Tour and the PIF coming together to create a for-profit company that will be called PGA Tour Enterprises. 

Woods has stressed the importance of the date and PGA Tour commissioner Jay Monahan stated it was a 'firm target' to meet the deadline in a rare interview.

Monahan is scheduled to meet LIV mastermind Yasir Al-Rumayyan in the coming days. 

Rahm's decision to join LIV for a reported fee of £450m has led to speculation the North American circuit's agreement could be collapsing. 

The aforementioned Spieth suggested it was a 'nice play' by LIV to sign Rahm as the move will give the PIF significant leverage in ongoing negotiations. 

Read the full memo here:

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