Hopkins Golf: Bringing custom clubs straight to the customer
This post is part of our series, Favorite Stories. Think of it as a collection of entrepreneurs, products, and ideas that are inspiring Dwolla everyday. Want more? Find this story and others on Dwolla’s Pinterest board. Enjoy!
One of our awesome MassPay partners, Hopkins Golf, is doing some really cool things in the golf industry. They allow their customers to build custom golf clubs right on the website and then deliver them in record time, for a great price.
How is Hopkins Golf doing this? They’ve eliminated the middlemen to keep the prices affordable, something that we can get on board with, as we’ve built our own payment network to get around the legacy networks and their costly fees.
I chatted with Kevin Park, Hopkins Golf CFO, to learn more about the story behind the company.
What was the inspiration for founding Hopkins Golf?
We wanted to give consumers the tour experience [the ability to order custom clubs] and make clubs that are optimal for their game based on where they live. The tour players have been doing this for years, and because of our direct-to-consumer business model (see below), we can offer our clubs at a value and turnaround time no one else can match. Plus, we offer the most personalization options (initials, colors, engraving options) available in the industry.
Can you share one of your favorite Hopkins Golf-related stories or experiences?
We have already received over 700 threads on The Hackers Paradise, one of the largest golf community sites, raving about how great our clubs look and feel.
Where do you look to find inspiration in your career?
I think the ecommerce industry has only begun to tap into its potential in offering consumers products with the quality, value, and customization that traditional brick & mortar stores cannot match. I love looking for opportunities that can fit these characteristics and be profitable. For example, the reason why golf equipment interested me is because a club that costs less than $15 in components can end up costing the consumer $130, yet only a handful of golf club OEMs (original equipment manufacturers) are profitable.
What is one important lesson you have learned from building Hopkins Golf?
I’ve seen this in other startups I’ve been involved in: the business model is never perfect in the beginning. The most important factor is to quickly adapt to obstacles, incorrect assumptions, or mistakes.
Why did you choose to use Dwolla in your business?
As a startup, we want to focus much of our time on growing the business and the least amount of our time on administrative work. This includes writing checks and keeping paper records. In addition, every dollar matters from savings on payroll and vendor payments. Most importantly, banks will not give ACH privileges to startup companies and other vendors charge fees. So naturally, Dwolla is the perfect fit, especially considering that we have a lot of independent sales contractors.
Working with companies like Hopkins Golf is what makes working at Dwolla so rewarding. We get to meet some of the smartest, most creative people out there who aren’t afraid to reject the way that things have been done in the past, only to find a way to do it better and to benefit their customers.
Do you have an entrepreneurial dream that you’re chasing? Keep going! If there’s any way that we can help you, please let us know: [email protected].