Going global with IMG

Going global with IMG


In the first of new series looking at golf companies that offer international career opportunities, Steven Carpenter talks to four PGA Members who have found roles within global sports group IMG.

IMG has been at the forefront of the sport management industry since its inception in 1960, with golf at the heart of its activities. Over the past 25 years IMG Golf Course Services has assisted over 110 clubs with industry leading consulting services.

A few years ago, the company also launched IMG Prestige, an elite network of more than 200 courses that feature leading golf clubs and partners from across the world. The network provides a unique and valuable benefit to the members of each participating clu, as well as driving and delivering green fee revenue.

One of the key ingredients to the success of IMG facilities across the world in recent years has been the PGA Professional. PGA Master Professional Paul Burley, based in Singapore, is responsible for overseeing IMG’s Golf Course Design and Golf Club Management business. He has over 30 years of experience in the golf industry, has worked in Europe, Africa, Middle East, Asia and Australia and managed several of the world's leading golf clubs. Burley relentlessly pushes The PGA within IMG and proudly boasts that 18 PGA Professionals can be found at IMG facilities around the world.

“Throughout my career in golf management I’ve always given opportunities to other PGA Professionals,” said Burley (pictured above). “The training programmes are fantastic, and we feel confident on hiring high-profile PGA Professionals because we know they’re well prepared and bring good knowledge.

“IMG-managed clubs are known to be market leaders and renowned for providing a high-quality golf experience. This includes offering outstanding levels of service to members and guests, and world class standards in golf course conditioning. Creative sales and marketing plans that maximise revenue for our clients are a major focus of IMG managed clubs. PGA Professionals, with their background, experience and training, are best placed to initiate and deliver many of the key responsibilities we expect at our clubs.”

Below we profile three PGA Members who are currently working at IMG-managed clubs around the world.

Anton Samsonov
Golf Operations Manager
Dreamland Golf Club, Azerbaijan

“It is a great honour to work for IMG with PGA Professionals like Russell Hannah, Chris Brown and, of course, our dream team in Baku, Azerbaijan, where we have a great leader in PGA Advanced Fellow Professional Phil Jones and PGA Advanced Professional Alex Day.

"The IMG team gave me an opportunity to get my operations and tournament experience which allowed me to become PGA Director of Golf and also gain an PGA Advanced Professional status.

"I use all of my knowledge to promote IMG in CIS (Commonwealth of Independent States) countries to use their IMG Prestige network, while tourism from Russia, Ukraine, Kazakhstan, Belorussia and other countries increase as everyone travels to Baku to see the fantastic Dreamland Golf Club venue.”


Brodie MacDonald
General Manager
La Bagnaia Golf Resort, Italy

“I have been working within the IMG family since 2016. Previously, I've always enjoyed working at internationally-renowned resorts with strong hotel management companies. In terms of management brands and portfolios in golf, they do not come more recognised than IMG.

"From my very first interaction I could tell the senior management team were the type of people I would enjoy working with and more importantly, I could learn and develop from.

"The benefits of working for IMG are invaluable. Individually clubs are stronger thanks to an amazing and extensive portfolio of great facilities which are located across the globe. I have been fortunate to work at IMG clubs in Indonesia, Thailand and Italy, progressing from Director of Golf to General Manager.”

Heather Nolan
IMG Academy Golf Programme Manager
IMG Academy, Florida, USA

“I joined IMG UK in 2010, when I became certified as a David Leadbetter instructor in Austria before transferring to IMG Academy in Bradenton, Florida the following year. Once I stepped foot at this facility, I knew it was where I wanted to be.

"In 2018, after being a performance coach at the academy for seven years, I transitioned to become a Program Manager and I love my role. I wake up every day and I never feel like I am going to work. Growing up as an international golfer, I knew I was always going to be a PGA Professional and coach full-time, then one day work at the best academy in the world - it has always been my goal.

"Working in the United States has been a dream come true, especially in Florida. This is the golfing capital of the world. I wake up to sunshine every day and I raise my children while having a great work/life balance.”


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