Victoria golf club manufacturer Eidolon Brands sees growth, national recognition (Video)
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From an online-only presence to international distribution and further growth expected in just a few months' time, one Victoria golf club manufacturer is making a name for itself.
And the big boys have started taking note.
Eidolon Brands, a Victoria golf club manufacturer, was featured on Golf Digest's February "Hot List," its annual run-down of the newest, hottest equipment available in the golfing world.
The recognition - a silver ranking in the wedge category - came for the company's SCOR 4161 wedges and short irons, which rolled out in July but have yet to hit the market in force.
Terry Koehler, the company's president, CEO and co-founder, said he was proud the magazine took note of what the company was doing, and said it's the customization that really helps SCOR Golf products stand apart from the rest.
A club's weight distribution makes a big difference in how it performs for a particular player, Koehler said, explaining SCOR utilizes a progressive weight scheme throughout the club.
"With slightly different weighting, each is tuned to what you're trying to get the club to do," he said. "It gives you the opportunity to tune the trajectory of the golf ball."
The clubs' patented V-Sole design also offers two angles in the sole, Koehler said, making it more versatile.
"Each turf has a different rejection quality," he said, explaining hitting a ball out of a sand trap is different than from the rough and so on. "You need the wedge to be able to handle anything the ball can find."
The clubs sell for $129 per club for those with steel shafts and $149 per club with graphite shafts.
Stace Marlin has been with the company 10 months, serving as a sort of jack-of-all-trades.
"I do everything but sales," the production manager said. "Shipping, customer service, manufacturing, you name it."
A long-time golfer, Marlin said he enjoys working with the company and expects things to really ramp up in the coming months.
The Golf Digest recognition is just the cherry on top, Marlin said, explaining he made it a point to read the magazine's "Hot List" issues in years past.
"It's kind of like your wish list," he said with a smile. "You wait to make your purchases until you see what comes out on the list. It gives you an idea about what's coming out."
Although Koehler's current company got its start about three years ago, his business experience began long before that.
A Cuero native who attended Texas A&M University, Koehler worked stints in the automotive, marketing and banking worlds before opening an advertising agency of his own at age 26.
It was when he found himself developing golf portfolios that he said he realized his heart really was with the golfing industry.
He took on a role designing clubs for Ben Hogan Co. - a dream job then, since Hogan was his childhood idol - and, after that, he developed and sold another golf company, Reid Lockhart.
He started Eidolon Golf, a purely online company, about three years ago.
But later, he transformed it into its current carnation, Eidolon Brands, with help from investors in the Crossroads and Austin.
While the company already has seen its share of change in recent months, Koehler said he expects even more - much more - down the road.
New distributors will soon come on board in New Zealand, Australia and other countries, he said, and Eidolon Brands will also expand into the United Kingdom and more.
About 30 sales representatives will soon come in on a contract basis. And by mid-summer, he expects the company to grow from seven employees to about 20.
The company expects to see daily volume increase 10 to 15 times what it is now, he said, meaning it's also time to find a bigger workspace.
"This goes from being a very small company to a very sizeable company in our division," he said, adding he's content now to compete solely within others in the wedge category. "We're not out to slay any giants."
All in all, Koehler said he's proud of the path his company has taken thus far. He also looks forward to the months and years ahead.
"Growth creates challenge," he said. "But it's a challenge we relish."