INTERVIEW WITH... Jeff Clause, CEO of St Francis Links

APRIL 13, 2015

St Francis Links, which can be found in the village of St Francis Bay, is a top-ranked golf course and residential estate. The course won Best New Course in South Africa in 2007 and is currently rated by Golf Digest in the national Top-10. We chatted to its CEO, Jeff Clause, about – obviously, golf. 

Business Link Magazine (BLM): Why, in your opinion, do so many businessmen play Golf?

Jeff Clause (JC): The golf course represents neutral ground for business. There are no distractions and one can certainly learn a lot about a person on the golf course - his demeanour on the course and how he handles good shots and bad ones is a good way to judge character.

As a PGA Professional, I was once asked to look after a guest for a member. After the game, the member brought me a drink and thanked me – they had settled a big business deal.  

BLM: What makes St. Francis Links corporate sports offerings unique?

JC: I like to make every corporate outing something very special – from the personalisation on the lockers and carts to special attention on the course, with a welcome talk before the game and a prize giving after.

It is becoming more popular to select a few VIP clients or colleagues, rather than hosting a major event, and do something very special for them – golf in the afternoon, a shoot-out after with drinks on the 17th, dinner, accommodation on the estate, breakfast and a leisurely drive back (maybe even more golf!). We tailor every event to the client’s needs and wants. Oh, the non-golfers also have plenty to do!

BLM: Do you offer special rates?

JC: I really like to provide added value – a visitor may pay a green fee and walk for R575 (still one of the best green fees for a top 10 course). However, if you come with eight players or more, the value may include a cart and halfway snacks! The second Wednesday of every month is our ‘Open Wednesday’, sponsored by Scott Keevy and ITEK. Great rates with a nice pack of meat for the winners!

BLM: How do corporates get in touch with you?

JC: From conference to golf clinics to golf to boat cruises to hiking to fishing to eating to sleeping in beautiful St Francis, email [email protected] or [email protected] or call 042 200 4500.