Choosing Charleston County for its first U.S. foray, United Kingdom-based Golfbreaks.com recently enrolled in South Carolina’s new Landing Pad initiative with plans to operate from its new base in Mount Pleasant.
Landing Pad — a program to help already-established global businesses enter U.S. and/or South Carolina markets — functions as a partnership between the S.C. Department of Commerce and regional economic development coalitions.
Golfbreaks.com has arranged golf travel vacations for approximately 220,000 players yearly since 1998 and is now preparing for expansion to North America, with destinations in Mexico and the Dominican Republic in the works for availability by January 2017.
CEO and co-founder Daniel Grave pointed out the enormous potential for market share, with 30 million golfers in North America outnumbering the U.K.’s 4 million golfers by more than 6 to 1.
“[If] we can capture the same five percent market share as we have in the U.K., we will be sending 1.5 million North American golfers on golf vacations annually at some point,” Grave said. “This, in turn, will provide career opportunities for literally hundreds of Charleston area residents.”
Charleston County Council Chairman Elliott Summey praised the move as “a natural fit,” while Mount Pleasant Mayor Linda Page expressed confidence in the company’s choice.
"We're delighted Golfbreaks.com has chosen Mount Pleasant for its North American headquarters and look forward to watching them flourish here,” Page said. “We're confident Landing Pad businesses will continue to find the town's stunning natural beauty, low taxes, unmatched quality of life and hands-on, real-time business support attractive for putting down roots in Mount Pleasant."
Gov. Nikki Haley and Secretary of Commerce Bobby Hitt also commended the firm’s interest. Haley said she looked forward to the impact Golfbreaks.com will have on “our entire state’s tourism industry and world-class golf culture."
Hitt said, “Team South Carolina will continue to work together to ensure that we provide the most welcoming environment possible for businesses from all corners of the globe.”
Golfbreaks.com plans to offer hiring opportunities on a regular basis. Potential employees can visit firstname.lastname@example.org.
“The opportunity is hugely exciting,” Grave said. “[We] are thrilled to have chosen the Lowcountry for our North American headquarters [and] we could not have been given more support so far, for which we are extremely grateful.”