The Giannulli Story
I come from a business and fashion background, but golf’s a true passion for me. I love the game because it’s a family sport, a social opportunity, a business tool and a personal challenge all in one. G/FORE products aren’t designed in a cubicle and tested in a factory — they’re born out of a desire to express myself while playing and to help inject a little more fun and flair back into the game.
I test prototypes myself, putting in countless rounds on the course and hours at the range. When we were first making the gloves, we tweaked everything from the dye method to the stitching on each fingertip until we had a product that I believed was worthy of the game. This detail-obsessed development process still happens with every new product that bears the G/FORE marque.
And though I lead an active art-and-design-fueled lifestyle, I’m a bit of a traditionalist at heart when it comes to golf. I’m a member of a time-honored country club, I wear pants on the course, and I wear traditional fabrics. So I’ve always wanted G/FORE to be rooted in all the right things. With the modern athlete in mind, we’ve focused a classic aesthetic with modern fabrications and details that make our products uniquely G/FORE.
I hope G/FORE can continue to help golf once again move forward — always with a healthy respect for the past.
You wake up in the morning — what’s your driving passion?
How can we create something completely disruptive and different in this space without being so edgy that people won’t want to participate with our movement.
What distinguishes G/FORE from your competitors in the golf industry?
Hopefully everything. I start from a design perspective first. Golf is important but not the driving factor. We are driven by art, architecture, music and things we find inspiring. My sense is most other golf companies are “me too” and do what they see their competitors doing.
Describe the G/FORE customer?
They’re very diverse. We have the Millennial all the way to the 55-year-old gentleman who loves a traditional esthetic with an edge. Our customers are a little more colorful — someone who understands and appreciates fashion a bit more than the old school 1980’s golfer with sleeves down to his elbows.
Customer service is routinely touted by many companies and their leaders. Define the term and the G/FORE response?
We just partnered with Peter Millar who is known around the world as one of the gold standards with customer service. Thanks to their best in class
customer service, all I have to worry about is product, marketing and developing the brand and giving it a voice.
In approximate percentage figures — where will G/FORE be focusing upon between brick and mortar outlets, green grass shops and online sales?
It’s safe to say we’re looking at everything and will continue to do things in keeping with the DNA we’ve established.
Biggest pet peeve?
The folks that continue to knock us off. It’s happening from many companies now that our range of product is so varied. It’s okay to set your own movement — just do it your way please.
You can change one thing in golf unilaterally — what would it be and why?
You should be able to move your ball out of divot from the middle of the fairway.
The major golf organizations — USGA, R&A, PGA of America, PGA TOUR, LPGA — are all seeking ways to attract players to the sport. This is especially so for Millennials, women and minorities. If you were counseling them — what would you advise?
Have people on board within their staff that represent those groups. You can’t think that a 65-year-old man with a business degree from Harvard is going to understand how the Millennial thinks. If in fact — that’s what they really want, they need to get young people in there that can speak the language in an honest way.
What’s the biggest mistake men make when choosing clothes and likewise women?
Women seem to get very bedazzled, when it comes to golf, and men haven’t a clue. For men — sizing. Men buy things that are far too big, and, in turn, look sloppy. Women tend to think a rhinestone — or a couple hundred — complete the look.
Best advice you ever received — what was it and who from? Also, given your years of experience — what would you advise those just getting started with their careers?
From my father — “The same people you meet on your way up are the same people you’ll meet on your way down — so check yourself when you’re having some success.” My advice to those starting their careers is to make sure you don’t do it for the money. It has to be about passion and your love for doing whatever you’re doing. Do something that’s decidedly different or necessary in the space, not just a replica of someone else’s idea.
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