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Does Nike make its own balls?


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#1 kdjlaw

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Posted 25 July 2008 - 11:03 AM

When Nike began marketing golf balls, I know their better balls were made by Precept (now Bridgestone) and their cheaper balls were made by Top Flite.  As for the better, urethane-covered balls, there was always a Precept ball corresponding to each Nike ball that sold for $5 less per dozen.

So the  question is, does Nike still have Bridgestone or some other company make their balls for them or has Nike built a ball plant and is manufacturing its own?


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#2 villa

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Posted 25 July 2008 - 11:16 AM

Wasn't aware of the Nike/Top-Flite link but yes, Nike golf balls are still produced in the Bridgestone plant.

That being said, there is no correlation between any of Nike or Bridgestone's balls. Nike and Bridgestone each have their own R&D departments (which they spend millions on per year) and they each produce different balls.

#3 clothier

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Posted 25 July 2008 - 01:09 PM

i hate to burst your bubble, but last time someone brought it up, they mentioned that are now less then 10 golf ball plants in operation world-wide. It might be less then that now. And most of those plants are independently owned and opperated by names you would never recognize.

In some cases, they ball is the same, they just change the name on it. For a while there, you could buy a noodle or one of the slazenger balls and they were the same.

Most of the OEM's just use who ever can make their ball the cheapest.

#4 GaijinGolfer

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Posted 25 July 2008 - 06:18 PM

I dont doubt that the Nike One is made by Bridgestone, it says right on the box, "MADE IN JAPAN".  However, I wonder if the Juice which is made in the USA and the Distance which is made in China are also made by Bridgestone?

#5 TempusFugit

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Posted 25 July 2008 - 10:43 PM

Nike makes nothing, they outsource everything they sell.

Edited by TempusFugit, 25 July 2008 - 10:43 PM.


#6 liketogolf

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Posted 29 July 2008 - 03:21 PM

This question just keeps coming aroung.  What difference does it make?  I never hear anything about drivers or irons.  Most of these clubs are made in the same factories.  Companies buy time on the line to make their designed clubs.  One week it may be TM the next week Titleist or Nike, but no one questions whether the products are the same.  A golf ball is round but after that there are alot of R&D differences.  Unfortunately not much is made in the good old USA and most companies do not want to own factories.  Cheaper to contract out the work.

#7 ROBOPTI

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Posted 29 July 2008 - 03:28 PM

View PostTempusFugit, on Jul 25 2008, 10:43 PM, said:

Nike makes nothing, they outsource everything they sell.

PERFECTLY worded ... Nike IS the most powerful MARKETING company on earth - Period.

Why take on ANY overhead - when you can attach one of the most valuable/powerful/noticable logos in the world - and create artifical value based on the perception of quality. Not saying that Nike stuff is junk - just saying that swoosh strengthens the value just by it's appearance. Nike makes high end products - they just don't own the hard-dollar production facilty that makes them - VERY VERY intelligent on their part as well.

Edited by ROBOPTI, 29 July 2008 - 03:29 PM.


#8 brianwestchest

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Posted 29 July 2008 - 04:24 PM

We should keep in mind that making  your own ball and designing your own ball are two different things.  If Nike's balls are made by someone else, to Nike's specifications, then they could be worth the Nike premium. In a lot of industries plant and manufacturing lines are shared.  I have zero problem with that.   If the manufacturer is simply taking balls of the line stamping one "Nike" and the next something else, well that's a whole different issue that I'd like to know about because I lose too many golf balls to pay for a logo.

#9 e-dog9

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Posted 31 July 2008 - 01:06 PM

View Postclothier, on Jul 25 2008, 11:09 AM, said:

In some cases, they ball is the same, they just change the name on it. For a while there, you could buy a noodle or one of the slazenger balls and they were the same.


Do you know this for sure, and which Slazenger it was?  My sense is that Noodles, while cheap balls, are not nearly as tacky/clicky or as hard as the aforementioned.

#10 clothier

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Posted 31 July 2008 - 01:20 PM

yes on the for sure part, and no, I don't know which ball it was, it was a year or two ago.


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#11 clothier

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Posted 31 July 2008 - 04:27 PM

well, that would just ruin the whole concept of internet incognito, wouldn't it?

Let me say this: I know the company that owns the factory that made the balls.

#12 Critter

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Posted 09 November 2008 - 10:41 PM

View Poste-dog9, on Jul 31 2008, 01:06 PM, said:

View Postclothier, on Jul 25 2008, 11:09 AM, said:

In some cases, they ball is the same, they just change the name on it. For a while there, you could buy a noodle or one of the slazenger balls and they were the same.


Do you know this for sure, and which Slazenger it was? My sense is that Noodles, while cheap balls, are not nearly as tacky/clicky or as hard as the aforementioned.

It is true that Slazenger and some Noodle balls are made at the same plant and are very similar if not exacts.
The Softest Noodle and some other variations of the Noodle are made in Taiwan as is most of the Slazengers. However, some of the other Noodles types are not made in Taiwan.  Heck, the Softest Noodle was made in both locations, it simply depends on the mfg year and ball markings.
As others have indicated/stated.... if you take say 40 different balls from the top 8 name brands, should the truth be know there are not 40 differences. In reality less than 25 of them are different. Many simply share a differnet name on the exact same ball.  

Some of this can be verified by view the USGA Approved Ball spec PDF on their website. I have spent a lot of time reviewing this data.

#13 irvtrain

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Posted 09 November 2008 - 11:03 PM

Slazenger Black label I know is made by Bridgestone. They advertise the seamless design. If you want a seamless design golf ball and you want to advertise it, you have to have Bridgestone make it as they own the patent for the seamless design. You don't have them make it, you will get sued like Titleist.

#14 jman2407

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Posted 10 November 2008 - 04:42 PM

Clothier-

There are definitely more than 10 golf ball manufacturing plants worldwide.  

Bridgestone has 4 that I know of:  Japan, China, Malaysia, USA
Titleist has 2 plants both in the USA and are about to open another one overseas.
Slazenger has 1 in Taiwan.
Srixon/Dunlop has 3: Japan, Taiwan, Indonesia
TaylorMade/Maxfli has 3:  USA, Taiwan, China
Callaway has 1 in the USA.
Volvik has 1 in Korea

Even if we assume some companies share plants to manufacture their balls we still haven't even mentioned all of the other "less chosen" balls available on the market today:

Cougar
Wilson
Snake Eyes
Zevo
Tommy Armour
Ram
Pure Spin
Lynx
TiTech
etc, etc, etc...

A couple of these companies may share a plant, but I would bet that it is the exception and not the rule.  Especially with the major manufacturers not wanting anyone to really know their manufacturing processes.

#15 Parmaster

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Posted 11 November 2008 - 01:46 PM

Aren't Nike's R & D/Ball Engineers just guys contracted from Bridgestone to work on their (Nike's) designs??


#16 Critter

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Posted 11 November 2008 - 10:08 PM

[quote name='jman2407' post='1327516' date='Nov 10 2008, 04:42 PM']Even if we assume some companies share plants to manufacture their balls we still haven't even mentioned all of the other "less chosen" balls available on the market today:

Wilson
Snake Eyes
Zevo
Tommy Armour
Ram
Pure Spin

etc, etc, etc...


[sup][size=5]WILSON ! A less chosen ball? Are you kidding? Not even counting the highly popular Wilson Staff balls, the Wilson line sells a ton of golf balls. [/size][/sup]

Edited by Critter, 11 November 2008 - 10:11 PM.


#17 jman2407

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Posted 12 November 2008 - 08:25 AM

Critter-

C'mon man, let's be serious.  Sure they sell "a lot" of balls, but they sell nowhere near the amount of balls that Titleist, Callaway, Bridgestone, etc. sell.  

They sell their balls to less-accomplished golfers, because those are the only people who play Wilson.  I bet you cannot even find 10 guys on this website with a handicap index of 3.0 or less that play Wilson.  Furthermore, I bet you cannot find 100 guys on this website of any playing ability that play Wilson golf balls on a consistent basis.

Sure they sell a lot of balls, but everyone sells a lot of balls.  Their market share is less than 2%.  I would call that less chosen, sorry if you disagree.

Edited by jman2407, 12 November 2008 - 08:29 AM.


#18 Critter

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Posted 13 November 2008 - 04:42 PM

View Postjman2407, on Nov 12 2008, 08:25 AM, said:

Critter-

C'mon man, let's be serious.
They sell their balls to less-accomplished golfers, because those are the only people who play Wilson. I bet you cannot even find 10 guys on this website with a handicap index of 3.0 or less that play Wilson.
Sure they sell a lot of balls, but Their market share is less than 2%.

I was being serious.

And what percentage of this boards members have a handicap index of 3.0 or less? Probably less than 5%. And yes, even some of them are using the Zip or Tx4.

Additionally, your way off concerning your statements concerning Wilson having less than 2% of the market share. (see article below)


but analysts estimate that Callaway could sell as much as $50 million worth, giving it about 3.5 percent of the market and roughly matching Taylor Made's current share. After that, Callaway is expected to take aim at the No. 3, 4 and 5 makers: Maxfli, Wilson and Precept.

Edited by Critter, 13 November 2008 - 10:22 PM.


#19 teedoff

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Posted 13 November 2008 - 08:41 PM

View PostCritter, on Nov 13 2008, 04:42 PM, said:

View Postjman2407, on Nov 12 2008, 08:25 AM, said:

Critter-

C'mon man, let's be serious.
They sell their balls to less-accomplished golfers, because those are the only people who play Wilson. I bet you cannot even find 10 guys on this website with a handicap index of 3.0 or less that play Wilson.
Sure they sell a lot of balls, but Their market share is less than 2%.

I was being serious.

And what percentage of this boards members have a handicap index of 3.0 or less? Probably less than 5%. And yes, even some of them are using the Zip or Tx4.

Additionally, your way off concerning your statements concerning Wilson having less than 2% of the market share. (see article below)

BTW... Callaways market share as of November 2008 is 3.5%, which is very similar to Taylormades. Note the New York Times article published TODAY.

but analysts estimate that Callaway could sell as much as $50 million worth, giving it about 3.5 percent of the market and roughly matching Taylor Made's current share. After that, Callaway is expected to take aim at the No. 3, 4 and 5 makers: Maxfli, Wilson and Precept.

http://query.nytimes...mp;pagewanted=2

You stand corrected.


Did you happen to read the date the article was published??? February 2000, when Callaway was trying to enter the ball market with the Rule 35, shortly before Bridgestone slapped them with a patent infringement lawsuit that lasted roughly 18 month before Callaway was found to have violated some of Bridgestone's solid core technolgy patents. The result was Callaway paid damages as well as agreed to enter into a licencing agreement for three piece technology.

#20 jman2407

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Posted 14 November 2008 - 08:10 AM

Thank you teedoff for pointing that out before I could.

Not being rude Critter, but you have no clue what you are talking about.  Wilson's CURRENT market share is 2% guaranteed.

Currently only 4 companies have over 5% market share:  

Titleist/Pinnacle
Bridgestone/Precept
Nike
Callaway/Top Flite

I also started a post to help you with your search, you should be able to find it.  There are over 75,000 members on this site.  I will give you your 5% are less than a 3.0 HI or better, so that is 3,750 members.  You will not find 10 of those 3,750 that play Wilson golf balls exclusively.  Also, you will not find 100 of the 75,000 members of any playing ability that play Wilson golf balls the majority of the time.

People play Wilson, and they are good balls, but the numbers are very few when compared to the people who play the other manufacturers out there.

Edited by jman2407, 14 November 2008 - 08:53 AM.


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#21 jman2407

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Posted 14 November 2008 - 03:11 PM

Critter-  

That last post may have come off rude and I surely do not want you to think that of me.  The Wilson balls are fine and if you like them, then play them.  To each his own.

All I am trying to say is that Wilson is definitely a "'less chosen" ball.  We can all agree that Wilson does not sell the same amount of balls as the big boys in Titleist, Bridgestone, Nike, and Callaway correct???  That is the only point I was trying to get across to you.

Edited by jman2407, 14 November 2008 - 03:13 PM.


#22 Critter

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Posted 14 November 2008 - 03:12 PM

View Postjman2407, on Nov 14 2008, 08:10 AM, said:

Thank you teedoff for pointing that out before I could.

Not being rude Critter, but you have no clue what you are talking about. Wilson's CURRENT market share is 2% guaranteed.

Currently only 4 companies have over 5% market share:

Titleist/Pinnacle
Bridgestone/Precept
Nike
Callaway/Top Flite

There are over 75,000 members on this site. I will give you your 5% are less than a 3.0 HI or better, so that is 3,750 members. You will not find 10 of those 3,750 that play Wilson golf balls exclusively. Also, you will not find 100 of the 75,000 members of any playing ability that play Wilson golf balls the majority of the time.

There is nowhere close to 75,000 ACTIVE users!  
Yes, their have been 75,000 user id created over the years this board has existed, but single individuals who are active is probably 50% of that. So refigure based on 37,500.
You are incorrect to state there are less than 100 people who play Wilson Staff balls.

#23 jman2407

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Posted 14 November 2008 - 03:18 PM

I did not state that there are not 100 users of Wilson golf balls in the world.  In fact, I am sure there are millions of people who play Wilson golf balls.  What I did state is that I bet you cannot find 100 members on this website that play Wilson golf balls exclusively or more than any other brand.

The majority of people on this website and in the world as well play Titleist, Bridgestone, Nike, or Callaway.  Go ask any pro shop or off course retailer what their sell thrus are on golf balls.  Wilsons collect dust and the other balls are reordered on a monthly basis.

#24 Starched

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Posted 08 December 2008 - 12:52 AM

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