By Corey Yoshimura
As the noun implies, genesis signifies creation, and it is befitting a brand-named Genesis has become the driving force behind the PGA TOUR and DP World Tour’s co-sanctioned event in Scotland, a country known as the birthplace of golf.
The US$9 million Genesis Scottish Open is undoubtedly one of Europe’s legacy events and as it prepares to celebrate the second year of its title sponsorship with the Korean luxury automobile brand, the global spotlight will shine on the Renaissance Club in North Berwick from July 13-16 with eight of the world’s top-10 golfers, headlined by top-ranked Scottie Scheffler, Rory McIlroy and defending champion Xander Schauffele, teeing up in the home of golf.
So how did an automobile brand from Asia, which is the luxury line of Hyundai Motor Group, become synonymous with one of Europe’s most cherished tournaments?
The journey dates back to 2011, the year Hyundai launched its first foray into golf sponsorship by becoming the title sponsor of the PGA TOUR’s Tournament of Champions in Maui, Hawaii in a partnership which enjoyed a successful five-year run.
During that time, the Genesis marque launched in November 2015 as a standalone brand. By 2016, Genesis took the first steps in its long-term commitment to golf as a platform for the brand’s approach to luxury and hospitality by broadening their relationship with the PGA TOUR and taking over the title sponsorship role of Tiger Woods’ hosted tournament in Los Angeles, now known as the Genesis Invitational. Genesis has been sponsoring the event since 2017, shortly after the launch of the Genesis brand in the U.S. market.
In between, Genesis also became the official automobile sponsor of the Presidents Cup in 2019 when it was held in Australia and is committed to each playing of the Presidents Cup through 2026, with the aspiration to broaden its reach within key localized markets.
By embracing golf, Genesis has leveraged on the PGA TOUR’s global marketing appeal to elevate its own brand presence and expansion into new markets, and showcasing its array of finest and state-of-the-art automobiles intended to make positive differences in people’s lives.
Genesis is also now a prime mover with the KPGA Korean Tour through the Genesis Points System (2016) and Genesis Championship (2017), where leading Koreans earn playing opportunities on the DP World Tour and PGA TOUR.
The Korean automaker was also the presenting sponsor of the inaugural Korea Championship launched in April as a co-sanctioned tournament by the DP World Tour and KPGA.
“The support and commitment from Genesis to advance the game of golf, not only in Korea but around the world, is truly inspiring,” said Christian Hardy, PGA TOUR Senior Vice President International.
“They are an esteemed partner of the PGA TOUR and distinguished ambassadors of the game of golf to the millions of people around the world that love and play our sport.”
Chris Lee, Senior Vice President and Managing Director, PGA TOUR – APAC said, “Through strategic sponsorship programs, Genesis has enabled players of all levels to chase their dreams, and elevated the stature of some of the most renowned golf tournaments including the Genesis Scottish Open and Genesis Invitational. We look forward to many more years of close collaboration and success with Genesis.”
The Genesis launch in the U.S. has witnessed a 40% increase from between 2020 to 2022 in both ad awareness and purchase intent. As a brand whose core values of respect, integrity and excellence align closely with golf and the Korean culture, Genesis has demonstrated an audacious commitment to grow the sport in every facet through strategic sponsorship investments and meet its commercial goals.
“Genesis recognizes the powerful synergy between our brand’s commitment to support the sport through our standards of luxury and hospitality, with the PGA TOUR’s drive to inspire and positively impact the world of golf,” said Mike Song, Global Head of Genesis.
“We often say our commitment to golf stems from the shared ideals of respect, integrity and excellence, and the PGA TOUR has been the perfect platform to showcase our support to the players, caddies, and fans we engage with through our sponsored tournaments.”
Launching a brand like Genesis in Europe, the home of luxury, is not about achieving overnight success; Genesis is here for the long term. European consumers often prioritize relationships and experiences when engaging with a brand, and Genesis’ approach to the European region is based on delivering a differentiated customer journey—also known as the Genesis Difference.
“In just two years, Genesis has successfully established itself in Europe and the response from consumers is extremely positive. We achieved a 563% increase in customer deliveries in 2022 and, with such a desirable range including three all electric cars, demand continues to grow,” said Lawrence Hamilton, Managing Director for Genesis Motor Europe.
“Genesis products have won car of the year awards in our three European markets, we are winning group tests in the media and customers have spoken; they want to buy Genesis….Exceptional customer service and hospitality remains at the core of Genesis, and we are looking forward to welcoming more owners to our brand.”
With this week’s Genesis Scottish Open being in the global spotlight, Genesis is counting on the event’s rich legacy and traditions to maintain its desire to deliver world-class entertainment and unique brand experiences to golf fans at the Renaissance Club as the brand looks to further expand its presence throughout Europe, in part, through their partnership with PGA TOUR.
Past champions such as England’s Aaron Rai in 2020, Australia’s Min Woo Lee in 2021 and most recently, America’s Xander Schauffele are all proof that Genesis Scottish Open offers an elite arena for players to propel their careers. “Has a good ring to it,” said a smiling Xander Schauffele when he was introduced as the 2022 Genesis Scottish Open champion. “It’s great to win the first event co-sanctioned between the two tours. The tournaments Genesis puts on have always been elite and I knew this was going to be no different.”