As Tiger and Rory tee off for the Masters this week, an increasing number of fantasy sports enthusiasts are gearing up for their own battles online. And that could be the key to re-establishing golf's popularity.
Fantasy golf has become big business for fantasy sports platforms like DraftKings. The Boston-based start-up says that the number of weekly users for its golf product has grown tenfold over the last year.
The rise of the fantasy sport comes as the real-world sport is struggling. Sports equipment makers and retailers both reported declining sales of their golf products last year. By a wide margin, more courses are closing in the United States than are opening.
That growing base of fantasy users is also doling out eight times more money on the site than it did last year. Last week, DraftKings received a $250 million investment from entertainment giant Disney that could value it at around $900 million, according to The Wall Street Journal.
DraftKings declined to comment on any deal with Disney.