Callaway Golf (NYSE: ELY) and IBM today announced they are teaming up to offer an innovative
technology solution designed to provide golfers everywhere with Callaway golf clubs made to
their exact specifications. The new custom clubfitting initiative combines Callaway Golf's
cutting-edge technology, IBM's award-winning ThinkPad* notebook computers and the hands-on
expertise of golf professionals around the world.
The main technological component of the Callaway Custom Fitting Solution program is a
proprietary computer system powered by IBM ThinkPad T21 Series notebooks that will allow golf
professionals to record swing data such as ball speed, clubhead speed and projected distance
during a fitting session. The computer program, using expert feedback from the golf
professional, then calculates which specifications would best fit each individual.
The solution features a unique, mobile club-storage cart that can be pushed by hand or pulled
behind a golf car. The three-wheeled scooter contains 50 golf clubs with varying
specifications from across Callaway Golf's product lines, including Big Bertha ERC II Forged
Titanium Drivers, Big Bertha Hawk Eye VFTTitanium Woods, Steelhead Plus? Stainless Steel
Woods, Hawk Eye Tungsten Injected Titanium Irons, Steelhead X-14 Irons and Ladies' Gems.
"We've built this fitting system to be the best of both worlds - trusted advice from an
experienced golf professional and technological data that will help us make the best set of
clubs for a particular golfer," said Richard C. Helmstetter, Senior Executive Vice President,
Chief of New Products for Callaway Golf. "The computer system we have incorporated into the
Callaway Custom Fitting Solution program is an entirely new system that encompasses what we
have learned about golf club technology with what we know about the benefits of properly
fitted golf clubs. We have learned a lot about building custom clubs for tour professionals
at our test center in Carlsbad. This new system enables us to bring that exciting experience
to golfers around the world."
Video Swing Analysis
The Callaway Custom Fitting Solution also includes a video swing analysis capability, called
A-Star. Golf professionals can plug a video camera into the system and tape a golfer's
swing, then use the onboard computer to provide analysis and instruction with features such
as split-screen viewing and a telestrator to track movement. By simply adding a video
camera, a golf professional can transform the Callaway Custom Fitting Solution into a
full-fledged system teaching tool.
The IBM ThinkPad and launch monitor will be included with the Callaway Custom Fitting
Solution system, and golf professionals will be trained to perform a fitting with this
proprietary equipment. After a fitting session, the golf professional will be able to quickly
and easily place a custom order for the consumer that will be built and shipped in a matter
of days by Callaway Golf's new custom department. The Callaway Custom Fitting Solution
program is scheduled to roll out to select retail accounts this summer.
"We are excited about partnering with IBM on the Callaway Custom Fitting Solution," said Mick
McCormick, Executive Vice President of Global Sales for Callaway Golf. "IBM presented the
best technological solution for what we consider to be the most advanced fitting system in
the golf industry. We also look forward to continued research and development work with IBM
on possible fitting technology for future use."
Leaders Pair Up
"Much like IBM in the computer industry, Callaway Golf has built a considerable reputation as
a technology leader in the golf business," said Rick McGee, Vice President of Marketing, IBM
Personal Device Brands. "ThinkPads are noted for durability, reliability and ease of use,
characteristics that help make this solution a winner to the benefit of golfers everywhere."
- ends -
Notes to Editor:
Callaway Golf Company makes and sells Big Bertha(r) Metal Woods and Irons, including Big
Bertha ERC(r) II Forged Titanium Drivers, Big Bertha Hawk Eye(r) VFT and Big Bertha Hawk Eye
VFT Pro Series Titanium Drivers and Fairway Woods, Big Bertha Steelhead Plus Stainless Steel
Drivers and Fairway Woods, Hawk Eye Tungsten Injected Titanium Irons, Steelhead X-14(r) and
Steelhead X-14 Pro Series Stainless Steel Irons. Callaway Golf Company also makes and sells
Odyssey(r) Putters, including White Hot(r), TriHot, and Dual Force(r) Putters. Callaway Golf
Company makes and sells the Callaway Golf(r) "Rule 35"(r) Firmfeel and Softfeel golf balls,
and the CB1 Red and CB1 Blue golf balls. For more information about Callaway Golf Company,
please visit our Web sites at http://www.callawaygolf.com and http://www.odysseygolf.com.
IBM is the world's largest information technology company, with 80 years of leadership in
helping businesses innovate. IBM creates, develops and manufactures the industry's most
advanced information technologies, including computer systems, software, networking systems,
storage devices and microelectronics. The fastest way to get more information about IBM is
through the IBM home page at http://www.ibm.com.
About IBM PCD
A leader in terms of performance, technology and service, IBM's Personal
Computing Division (PCD) designs, manufactures, markets and finances industry-standard
personal computers for individuals and businesses of all sizes throughout all sectors of
activity. PCD's award winning PC line up has been recognised for its quality, design,
ease-of-use, performance, manageability, durability and reliability.
About IBM Thinkpad
IBM ThinkPad continues to lead the way in delivering enhancements, innovations and solutions
that have shaped and defined the mobile computing industry. To date, more than 13 million
ThinkPad notebooks have been shipped. Since the launch of the ThinkPad 700C in 1992, these
acclaimed notebook computers have been lauded as design and engineering models, winning
nearly 750 industry awards. ThinkPad notebooks have been trusted for use in some of the
world's most extreme settings, including space shuttle launches, altitudes more than 17,000
feet above sea level and on the open seas. For more information about IBM ThinkPad notebooks,
please visit www.ibm.com or www.ibm.com/thinkpad.
PR Manager, IBM PCD UK and Ireland
Tel: 0207 202 3259
Ghezala Beg/Joanna Lane
(On behalf of IBM)
Tel: 01753 790700
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