, pub-5163334352799848, DIRECT, f08c47fec0942fa0, pub-5163334352799848, DIRECT, f08c47fec0942fa0
top of page

Providing Golf Practice with The Complete Range

EGM Golf is an independent British company who design, manufacture, and supply a complete package of golf driving range equipment. The desire to constantly evolve products is driven from the top by company owner Adrian Yallop who started the business in 1982. Paul Andrews spoke to the second generation, Harvey Yallop, to find out more.

As Harvey explains, “It all started back in the 1980’s by my father. His career began in the repair and sales of motorcycles and cars before being approached by a manufacturer of golf equipment. This resulted in them forming a partnership and building the foundations of EGM. The partnership grew, with Dad making the products and in due course he had a vision for the business and took the step to go it alone in 1982.”

The business is still based in Suffolk, where today it designs, manufactures and supplies everything needed to run a golf driving range - ball dispensers, ball washers, ball collectors, range mats, utility vehicles and lots more products for the range and outfield.

EGM have established a well-respected reputation for the innovative products and services that have been conceived and marketed throughout the years.

Be it stylish bay dividers, ball dispensing systems, or even the humble rubber golf tee, all aspects of driving range operation can be addressed with standard or customer-specific EGM equipment.

Harvey, like many from the second generation, grew up being immersed in the family business. As he explains, “I spent plenty of time in the business after school and during the school holidays when it was a growing business and there were only four or five multi-talented staff."

"Mum and Dad worked tirelessly to ensure success, working late into the night to get things done, and their work ethic is something that remains within the culture of who we are today.”

“I also have two half-sisters who now run their own businesses and one half-brother Roy, who looks after the consumables side of the business (such as tees, golf balls, mats etc.). Everyone has worked in the family business at some time over the years. The entrepreneurial gene has certainly been passed on to the next generation, as we enjoy the challenges involved with it all” continues Harvey.

For Harvey, the route into the business was an easy one. “I am technically minded, like my dad, and often got involved helping to fix machines. Upon leaving school I took an engineering course and then joined the business, gradually spending time in many areas before focusing more on the daily operations. Nowadays, Dad still enjoys being involved in key business decisions, which we share as a family. Most daily operations are managed by me and our brilliant team.”

This is a business that set out on a mission to become the one-stop shop for golf driving ranges, something that they have certainly achieved since the business began back in 1982 and something that they are justifiably proud of. As Harvey continues, “We get involved in new projects from the start, working with architects on designs, as well as consulting and supporting those with existing golf ranges. Our expertise is recognised, and we are excited as to where the future is going. Golf ranges are becoming more inclusive, embracing opportunities to engage more with families and developing social spaces for people to come together and enjoy some golfing fun.”

“We are confident that with our experience and ability to innovate, we will always be able to offer a personal service and leading-edge products. We are happy to assist with any project, from planning and installing a ball management operation, to offering technical advice on any aspect of driving range business” adds Harvey.

Like all family firms, EGM embraces all the opportunities that come their way and have done since the day the business began. “Dad is an entrepreneur and has worked (and played!) hard all his life” continues Harvey.

“We do now work with customers around the world in places as far afield as New Zealand, Madagascar and Mauritius; very different from our original target market – Dad chose the name of European Golf Machinery because he thought it made us sound bigger and would present us with more opportunities!”

These opportunities have certainly been evident over the years and the business has continues to grow, employee numbers are now over 20 and there are possible contracts on the horizon in the USA and Australia.

They remain a family business at heart and their family values still determine the way that they operate, as Diane Spalding, Office Manager, confirms. “I am not a family member but have worked here for over seven years and am very much made to feel part of the family."

"Everyone has an appreciation for the past and understands EGM’s journey from a small one-man band to the prosperous enterprise of today."

"The values associated with the early years are still present – we work hard, everyone feels part of something, and the culture is such that everyone feels they have a role to play, a voice in the business and is heard, something that makes life here at EGM special. We care about the business and are all appreciated at the same time.”

Harvey agrees, adding that “Being a family business is special and the culture is important to us as a family. We’re continuing to develop and grow, although we face the same challenges as every other business in the UK today. The economic climate continues to present challenges and although golf is seen as an affluent sport by many, it is certainly not recession proof. The social side of golf, its growing appeal to the family market, and the move towards more socially driven golf ranges could be vital to the health of our industry. We’re always keeping an eye on external factors, however our confidence in the sport is very high.”

Like many family businesses across the country, searching for talent to help grow the business is, at times, challenging. As Harvey continues, “We’ve recruited several great people over the past couple of years or so. There are certainly fewer applicants than there used to be, but we’ve worked a lot on the internal processes to make it easier for new staff to settle in. I will add that as a manufacturer and a small business where people work very closely together, being able to offer a flexible/hybrid approach is difficult and is something we’re currently working out. Having said that, we’ve been able to find the right people to work for us and to fit within the EGM culture.”

Family values are embedded into the culture at EGM and extend way beyond the factory doors. “We work with plenty of other family businesses, as both suppliers and customers, and it is great to work with other businesses that share a similar ethos,” adds Diane.

The entrepreneurial spirit that drives this business saw turnover increase during the pandemic and more opportunities to grow the business being identified daily. “We love what we do and have seen growing interest from the hotel and leisure sector, and other businesses that are exploring the feasibility of a driving range business on their land."

"We’ve also listened to our valued customers and are subsequently investing in the aftercare and maintenance division; our end goal being to make life easier for busy range operators."

"Driving ranges can generate a good return for a relatively low outlay too,” adds Harvey.

As a family business that is continuing to evolve, grow into new markets, invest in new machinery, and hire new talent, things are looking very positive. “We are excited about the way the business is going, albeit mindful of the prevailing economic climate, and are pleased to be playing our part in the evolution of golf practice. We’re proud to be known as the go to place for all things associated with driving ranges. We have built a great reputation in the industry and our wish is to enhance this further, as well as offering services across the globe,” concludes Harvey.


bottom of page