That’s not to say they don’t manufacture quality products though. One of their biggest successes was the Precept golf ball which Nick Price used in recording a number of his worldwide victories in the eighties and nineties.
Bridgestone was founded in 1931 by Shojiro Ishibashi and has always been a leader in the Japanese golf industry. In fact, Bridgestone is still the number one golf producer on the Japanese market.
Today they are represented by a handful of players on the PGA Tour including Matt Kuchar and Brandt Snedeker.
Bridgestone Golf Brand Profile
Founders: Shojiro Ishibashi
Headquarters: Covington, Georgia, USA
Revenue: $320 million annually (2017)
Employees: 230 (2017)
Major Professional Endorsements: Matt Kuchar, Brandt Snedeker, Tiger Woods, Bryson DeChambeau, Fred Couples
Recent Bridgestone Golf Product Reviews
Genius Bridgestone Golf Advertising
Bridgestone Golf – Brief History & Product Overview
Despite Bridgestone not being a massive player on a world scale, they have raised their game to be one of the industry leaders in terms of golf ball in North America. Under the leadership of CEO Dan Murphy as well as the undoubted consumer influence of Tiger Woods, Bridgestone turns over more than $300 million annually and the majority of this is the golf ball.
Unbeknown to most, Bridgestone Golf has over 1000 patents relative to the golf ball that the company leverages to their advantage.
Over the years Bridgestone have almost phased out the Precept golf ball to now be fully Bridgestone. Their hardware side lags slightly, but they are planning on unveiling new product lines in the coming months either pre-Christmas or early in the new year.
Murphy also negotiated the rights to the World Golf Championship event that was held at Firestone each year, but is now being moved to St Jude, Memphis as of 2019. Bridgestone as a whole (not just golf) is massive and has had over $32 billion in sales which makes it twice as big as Adidas and bigger than Nike. Having that kind of power is incredible and they’ve used it to their advantage in the golf niche.
This aspect also plays into their hands where Bridgestone is happy to manufacture forged irons catering to the premium upper end of the market and they realise that they are not suited to everyone, but they are fine with that. Golf Club Marketing Manager Josh Kinchen wants the golf company to grow, even just marginally, year on year rather than having an enormous spike one year and a subsequent drop the following year.
From 2011 to 2015 Bridgestone golf was fairly subdued on the market, but in Japan Bridgestone was still a major player – under the name Tour Stage.
In 2014 the company decided to drop the name Tour Stage and unify the brands into a solitary Bridgestone Golf which took advantage of the powerful brand awareness, unify the brands and tell the full company story.
Another thing Bridgestone does exceptionally well is sell the truth in terms of golf balls. In testing, they allow any consumer to hit Bridgestone balls as well as any other manufacturer’s ball in the testing to see the difference in performance. If you ask us, that is pure confidence that they believe in their product.