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jay monahan

Jay Monahan admits crucial factor in LIV Golf peace talks

With the legal fees piling up and the inevitable need to match LIV Golf stride for stride in prize money, Jay Monahan seemed to realise a compromise was the only option
 

PGA Tour commissioner Jay Monahan has revealed mounting legal fees were a crucial part of his decision to open talks with the Public Investment Fund.

According to the Wall Street Journal, Monahan told his employees on Thursday the PGA Tour didn’t have the financial power to fuel both a legal battle and its elevated event schedule this year.

The tour injected a handsome sum of prize money into the 2023 season, with each of the designated events averaging $20 million purses, combatting the riches on offer in the LIV Golf League.

The tour may have been required to maintain further increases in prize money in future years, which is what brought things to a head over the last seven weeks when the parties opened talks.

“We cannot compete with a foreign government with unlimited money,” Monahan reportedly said. “This was the time. We waited to be in the strongest possible position to get this deal in place.”

11 players filed an antitrust lawsuit against the tour in August 2022, but since then, all 11 players had dropped out which just left LIV Golf as the tour’s only opposition.

jay monahan

A trial was not meant to start until 2024, but as part of this new agreement with the PIF and the DP World Tour, all litigation proceedings will stop.

The PIF will become a premier corporate sponsor of the PGA Tour and the organisations will work together to “unify the game.”

The PGA Tour had allegedly already spent $50 million in legal fees, on top of introducing another $100 million in financial incentives for its players to remain loyal to the tour, including the designated events and the Player Impact Program.

The model “wasn’t sustainable” according to Monahan while competing with the Public Investment Fund which is worth a reported mouthwatering figure of $600 billion.

Earlier this week, Monahan addressed the tour’s financial future and the sustainability of ascending prize purses and legal bills.

“To make the changes in 2023 and ultimately to make the changes in 2024, we’ve had to invest back in our business through our reserves” he replied.

“But between our reserves, the legal fees, our underpin and our commitment to the DP World Tour and their legal fees, it’s been significant.

“I’m grateful that when we looked to 2024, the response we’ve gotten from our sponsors and our partners has been very positive, and those losses we’ve experienced in 2023 will be significantly mitigated.

“But you have to look at all the monies that we make, we make in the commercial realm, and we’re in long-term media deals. We’ve done a number of long-term sponsorship deals thanks to the great partners that we have.

“But this puts us in a position where we’ve got capital we can deploy to the benefit of our members and through our tournaments, and it gives us capital to deploy in growth businesses that ultimately will generate a return we’ll reinvest in our players.”

NOW READ: Questions that must be answered by the PGA Tour-LIV Golf merger

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jay monahan

Matt Chivers

Matt Chivers

Now on the wrong side of 25, Matt has been playing golf since the age of 13 and was largely inspired to take up the game by countless family members who played golf during his childhood.

Matt is a member at Royal Cinque Ports in Deal playing off a 5 handicap, just a pitching wedge away from his hometown of Dover where he went to school and grew up. He has previously been a member at Etchinghill and Walmer and Kingsdown in Kent.

Having studied history at the University of Liverpool, Matt went on to pass his NCTJ Exams in Manchester a year later to fulfil his lifelong ambition of becoming a journalist. He picked up work experience along the way at places such as the Racing Post, the Independent, Sportsbeat and the Lancashire Evening Post.

Matt joined NCG in February 2023 and is the website’s main source of tour news, features and opinion. He has reported live from events such as The Open, the Ryder Cup and The Players Championship, having also interviewed and spent time with some of the biggest names in the sport.

Consuming tour golf on what is a 24/7 basis, you can come to Matt for informed views on the game and the latest updates on the PGA Tour, DP World Tour, LPGA Tour, Ladies European Tour and LIV Golf.

What’s in Matt’s bag: Cobra LTDx LS driver, Cobra LTDx 3-wood, TaylorMade P7MC irons, Ping Glide 4.0 wedges, Odyssey putter.

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