The Strategic Vision Behind Colin Read's Whoosh: Revolutionizing Golf Tech

In the dynamic world of golf technology, few entrepreneurs have entered with the ambitious goal of building a unicorn. Colin Read, the driving force behind Whoosh, brings a unique blend of extensive experience and a visionary approach, setting him apart in an industry where many build their expertise in golf before moving on. Names like Joel Ragar from foreUP and Jonathan Vassil from Billy Casper Golf come to mind. But Colin Read's journey is different—he's already swum in the deep end, and his skill set is formidable.

The Whoosh Vision and the Challenges

Whoosh's mission isn't without its challenges. The primary hurdle lies in shifting the industry's mindset from the long-held belief in all-in-one operating systems. For years, companies like GolfNow and Teesnap have touted the benefits of all-in-one systems. Whoosh, however, aims to revolutionize this thinking. As Read emphasized in our podcast, "We want every operator to use best in class software. When you look across what we'd say the public golf scene, we see a lot of really good tee sheets that built a homegrown point of sale that's very golf specific. When we start asking operators, what's your pain point? I think to a man, everyone used a curse word described inventory week."

Convincing 2,000 golf properties to adopt this new paradigm is no small feat. Yet, the Whoosh team, recently backed by $10 million in funding, is poised to take on this challenge. The $10 million is in addition to an earlier seed round of $6 million. Their strategy is to build a great hospitality technology company, starting in golf. Read talks about what MindBody did, entering through the yoga lane but expanding into a very large and wide serving technology company. Read notes however, MindBody is now nearly 30 years old and it's time for new players to emerge.

As he says: "fundamentally we see a problem when it comes to high end reservations that nexus of hospitality reservations and point of commerce, it's broken. And I hate to say it, MindBody now is almost a 30 year old company. They're now a legacy solution. It's time for that next wave to come in, listen to customers and innovate."
From a simple Google search of all-in-one operating solutions

The Power of the Tee Sheet

Why is the tee sheet so crucial? Simply put, it’s the central hub of any golf operation. A well-designed tee sheet not only manages bookings but also integrates with other systems to enhance overall efficiency. Operators still using paper and pencil need to take note: transitioning to a digital tee sheet with advanced features can significantly impact the bottom line. This is particularly true when the tee sheet, full of customer data, is used in conjunction with a marketing tool to drive repeat play and engage with customers.

Researching Whoosh, we learned they found their wedge in private clubs that did not accept formal tee time reservations. Clubs who used waitlists or makeshift tee sheets began to see value in the Whoosh offering, including a tee sheet, and benefited from the time saved in using their new, mobile technology. Whoosh is not the first to enter golf with a tee sheet available for point of sale integrations. We know Sagacity has done this through various partnerships including an integration with Clover and Birrdi has partnered with Square as has Whoosh.

A unique advantage, the Whoosh CTO

Scott Peper, the co-founder and CTO of Whoosh, is a significant asset to the company due to his unique combination of golf and technology expertise. As an accomplished golfer with a scratch handicap, Scott deeply understands the game and its operational nuances, giving him an edge that many technologists in the golf tech space lack. This firsthand experience allows him to design solutions that are not only innovative but also highly relevant and user-friendly for golf course operators.

Scott's technical pedigree is equally impressive. A Princeton graduate, he has built world-class software for major companies like Homepolish and Hightower VTS. His background includes an internship at the Met Golf Association, where he developed key backend tools. Additionally, his connection to golf is further enriched by his father, George Peper, a renowned golf writer and historian. Under Scott’s technical leadership, Whoosh has developed award-winning products that have set new standards in the industry, such as best-in-class private sector golf technology and seamless integrations with Square for public courses.

In the podcast, Read said "Scott just innately is around the game and has kind of an unfair advantage just with his background in golf, but I'd say from a tech standpoint, he's one of the best CTOs I have ever seen. I think proof is in the pudding of what we've built. We have built a ton of product over the past three and a half years."

Partnerships and Integration Gaps

Whoosh has established several strategic partnerships, including deals with Golf Genius, Pacesetter, and Tagmarshal. Their integration with Square significantly aids their entry into the public golf sector. However, Whoosh's ambition to grow integrations and partnerships remains clear. As Read stated, "It's 2024 and integrations work."

When asked about the potential for improvement in open golf technology and more API access, Read was emphatic:

"Tons. This has to be almost a mandate when customers ask their software providers, who do you integrate with and what's your stance on integrations? That's important because one system, I mean, just look at a golf shop. I think Jason Pearsal from Club Caddie, gave us the stat on this podcast, 12 to 15 different pieces of software per facility just to run golf. If they don't communicate with each other, you're really creating a world of hurt from a data perspective, from business intelligence, from a staff workflow perspective. So this is about making our customers happy. It's building the products that they want and meeting the workflow needs for them, as well as their end customers, the members, the guests, the patrons."

While Read did not specify, it is clear he seeks deeper integrations with companies like Clubessential, Northstar, and GolfNow. It is uncertain whether Whoosh currently connects with Club Caddie and Jonas. Before the podcast was recorded we contacted Dayton Country Club, a Whoosh customer and spoke with Assistant Golf Professional Macrae Conrad.

Here's our exchange with Read about how Dayton Country Club uses Whoosh. Mike Hendrix: "Dayton Country Club does use Clubessential. They do a download import at the end of the night. They download, I'm assuming it's a report from Whoosh and they import it into Clubessential. So I don't want anybody to think that if you're using Clubessential, Whoosh isn't a good solution. If you ask the guys at Dayton Country Club, Whoosh actually is a good solution." Read: "In the private club space we're compatible with just about every legacy CMS system out there. Now the question is on the members side, how great of an experience is it? You know, I think at Dayton, they're using the Whoosh app predominantly. We have other clubs that use the Jonas app with Whoosh or we'll use Whoosh with some of the Jonas features as well. We would love to open up more integrations with the rest of that ecosystem. Cause again, it's about ease of use for the members and better tools for the staff."

Should most large golf management software providers fail to integrate with Whoosh, Read's entrepreneurial skills might be pivotal in overcoming this challenge.


After spending time with Colin Read and learning about Scott Peper, it's hard to imagine Whoosh being a flop. How long they remain highly tethered to golf remains to be seen. To become big, they'll have to go beyond country clubs and public golf courses. The Whoosh team are embarking on an ambitious journey to redefine golf technology. Their vision of a modern, integrated golf experience is both bold and timely. With a strong product rooted in the essential tee sheet, a strategic approach to market entry, and the backing of substantial funding, Whoosh is well-positioned to make a significant impact.

For a deeper dive into Colin Read's strategy and vision, listen to our full discussion on our website, YouTube, Apple, and Spotify.

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