Troon strengthens grip on Middle East market

The world's largest golf course operator has expanded its involvement in the fast-growing Middle East market.
Troon Golf, which has more than 200 courses in its worldwide portfolio, in August signed a strategic alliance with the Tourism Development and Investment Co. (TDIC), the leading tourism developer in the United Arab Emirate of Abu Dhabi.

The deal puts Troon, which already owns or operates four courses in the UAE, in position to direct Abu Dhabi's ambitious golf development program. And with Leisurecorp, one of Dubai's top development companies, recently taking a minority investment stake in Troon, it gives the Scottsdale, Ariz.-based company an inside track on future golf projects in the two emirates.

The rulers of Abu Dhabi have identified golf as a key element in the emirate's tourism development strategy. It is expected to play a major role in its effort to become an internationally recognized leisure and business travel destination.
Troon currently manages TDIC's Abu Dhabi Golf Club, home of a European PGA Tour event, the Abu Dhabi Open. TDIC also is developing a hotel, residences and spa adjacent to the golf club.

Troon also will manage a Gary Player Signature Design course now under construction on Abu Dhabi's Saadiyat Island, which is being developed as an international leisure, residential and cultural destination. Additional courses are planned on the island.
Troon executive DJ Flanders, who has served as general manager of Abu Dhabi Golf Club for the past 18 months, will be GM for the new alliance and will oversee the emirate's golf developments.

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