Premier Golf League vs LIV, copyright dispute

In June 2021, the project for a new professional golf circuit made its way into the world of our sport.

by Andrea Gussoni
Premier Golf League vs LIV, copyright dispute
© Getty Images Sport - Francois Nel / Staff

In June 2021, the project for a new professional golf circuit made its way into the world of our sport. The Premier Golf League introduced a completely innovative tournament format. A tournament played over 54 holes with shotgun starts by 12 teams, each composed of four players.Originally, the prize pool was set at £7.5 million for each event, and £10.7 million for the closing Championship.Subsequently, the figures were increased, and other Tours were contacted.

Liv Golf, news

The Saudi League, compared to the PGL format, introduced some regulatory changes, which, however, did not shield it from yet another legal issue revealed by The Times. The PGL executives tasked their lawyers with preparing documentation in support of a claim for intellectual property rights.

As of now, no lawsuit has been filed in the courts, nor has any form of out-of-court arbitration been invoked.The leaked information, however, reveals the amount that the franchise led by Andrew Gardiner intends to offer as compensation to settle the matter: £50 million.Currently, there are no official comments from the LIV Golf.

The early stages of a new golf tour aiming to rival the PGA Tour came to light in 2019 with the announcement of a league named the Premier Golf League. PGA Tour Commissioner Jay Monahan reacted by suggesting that golfers participating in a new league might be excluded from PGA Tour events.

Later in 2020, the PGA European Tour and the PGA Tour formed a "strategic alliance" to collaborate on commercial opportunities, scheduling, and prize funds for their respective memberships. The Premier Golf League engaged in discussions with Saudi investors regarding a financial partnership.

However, Golf Saudi, a division of the Public Investment Fund, opted to finance a new entity in 2020 with its own vision to establish a global professional league, often referred to as the "Super Golf League." This new entity was officially launched in October 2021 as LIV Golf Investments, with former professional golfer Greg Norman appointed as CEO. LIV Golf has frequently been likened to the dormant breakaway European Super League in football.