CLEVELAND – GIE Media, a business-to-business media company serving 17 different industries through print and digital magazines, websites and various other mediums had two of its employees named by Folio: Magazine in its 2018 Class of Folio: 100 Honorees.
Justin Armburger, art director of Cannabis Dispensary and Lawn & Landscape magazines, and Guy Cipriano, senior editor for Golf Course Industry magazine, are among those being recognized. The Folio: 100 list recognizes media professionals for the tangible impact they’ve had in their jobs, on their companies and brands or on the industry at large.
“We are thrilled to have both Justin and Guy recognized with this prestigious honor,” GIE Media President and CEO Chris Foster said. “Their contributions to our magazines and the industries they serve are invaluable.”
To view the complete list from Folio:, click here.
Kasozi’s victory (and a 200-member pro-am staged the next day) capped a development process some 10 years in the making. This slow road has nevertheless produced the finest course in the diversifying tourist region of East Africa.
“The first nine at Lake Victoria took seven years start-to-finish; the last nine took just two,” said architect Ramsey, a partner with Santa Rosa, Calif.-based Golfplan. “In new golf markets like this one, flexible timelines are the way to go. It serves no one to artificially advance a project according to arbitrary schedules. It’s better to get things exactly right.”
Kasozi was certainly impressed. He called the design “brilliant,” adding that these 18 holes at Lake Victoria Serena will advance the game in Uganda: "On behalf of the professionals I thank all who have made this possible," he said.
According to Ramsey, who was on site for the grand opening festivities, first among those is resort developer Katrick Halai, CEO of the Kenya-based contracting firm Cementers. The architect also singled out project manager Theodor van Rooyan and the artistry of Phase II shaper Joe Smith. Van Rooyan and Smith followed the design lead of Ramsey, who helped realize Uganda’s first international-standard course.
Formed in 1972, Golfplan has brought proper golf facilities to more new markets than any course architecture firm in the game, having created more than 217 original designs in 32 different countries (if renovation and master planning are considered, then 85 countries). This fall, in addition to Lake Victoria Serena, Ramsey christened the first international-standard course in the former Soviet Republic of Georgia (Tabori Hills GC) and the back nine at Samsun GC, Turkey’s first course on the Black Sea coast.
Half a world away last month, Ramsey’s partner in Golfplan, David Dale, watched the world’s top players tackle his much feted design, The Club at Nine Bridges.
“New course development in South Korea and Uganda can’t get much further apart, geographically and logistically, but the commonality here is getting things right — no matter how long it might take,” Ramsey said. “In a mature market like Korea, where we’ve done two dozen original designs, no course takes 10 years to complete. In Uganda, it’s a different exercise. We essentially created the development standard from scratch. And that would not have happened, ever, were it not for the commitment and passion of our developer, Mr. Halai, who ensured that not a single corner was cut. His commitment to quality never flagged. We deployed all the best materials, Toro irrigation, and the perfect turfgrass for this climate and site, Sea Spray Paspalum, which, like most everything (including bentgrass, for the putting surfaces), required importation.
“As a result, we have a thoroughly compelling golf course in a singular setting — with course conditions the equal of any in Africa. And I include South Africa in that assessment.”
The environment at Serena is naturally dominated by mighty Lake Victoria, a presence on all 18 holes but particularly the start and finish. Ramsey’s design made elegant use of an enormous, manmade lagoon that divides holes 1 and 9 from 17 and 18 — and accommodates the property’s sparkling new marina.
“I’m not sure that’s ever been done,” Ramsey said. “Those are wonderful water holes, the 1st especially — once you reach the landing area, all of Lake Victoria spreads out before you. The 18th is another picturesque par-4, a sexy little finishing hole that plays to an island green. But it’s something quite special to have a gallery of pleasure boats shuttling in and out of this marina, as the round begins and ends.
“It’s a pretty flat piece of ground there at water’s edge, but those are some of the most beautiful lakeside holes we’ve created as a firm — I’m really pleased with the way our wispy, native-grass areas aesthetically complement the papyrus reeds we preserved at lakeside. At the same time, several holes at Serena play up into natural grasslands dotted with acacia trees that remind me of mesquite trees from the American west. It’s a distinct environment up there, and the long views — over the course, to Lake Victoria beyond — are even more stunning."
The extended development timeline at Lake Victoria Serena Golf Resort & Spa worked out quite strategically. Located south of the capital, Kampala, the Serena property is today highly convenient to several million urbanites thanks to the newly completed Kampala-Entebbe highway. Kampala is also the point of entry for much of the country’s safari tourism industry.
“Uganda needs diversified tourist attractions and this resort definitely fits that bill,” said Ramsey, who added that his18 holes at Serena are an exotic wildlife tour in their own right. “There are dozens of exotic bird species on course, the Ugandan Crane being the most spectacular. That’s the national bird but the most a massive bird is the strikingly ugly Marabou Stork, which looks like a pterodactyl! There are some lovely monitor lizards out there, too. There used to be a python living in the papyrus reeds along No. 9 — but I don’t go out there looking for him.”
Bonita Bay Club’s green initiatives, programs and activities contributed to its America’s Greenest Clubs designation from Prevo Health Solutions, a purpose-driven sustainability company that recognizes clubs that have implemented eco-friendly practices such as increasing conservation and recycling efforts, and reducing energy and water consumption.
“Bonita Bay was founded on a vision of sustainability and living in harmony with nature,” said Dan Miles, Bonita Bay Club general manager and chief operating officer. “That purposeful philosophy continues today, driven by a shared commitment and environmentally conscious culture among our club members and employees.”
The America’s Greenest Club distinction complements Bonita Bay Club’s Audubon Sanctuary designation and its Distinguished Club, Platinum Club and America’s Healthiest Clubs recognitions.
“With the tremendous support of its members, board and staff, Bonita Bay Club leads by example,” said Rick Ladendorf, Prevo’s founder and CEO. “Their innovative leadership team has created a club of choice that is also known for being a great employer and a good neighbor.”
Curtis Tyrrell is the director of golf course operations at Bonita Bay Club.
This acquisition will combine two leading battery manufacturers with complementary product portfolios to create one of the largest energy storage providers with over $1.0 billion of revenue, eight manufacturing facilities and a presence in every major region. The transaction is expected to close in approximately 60 days.
“Trojan Battery is an industry leader with a great heritage and an amazing team of employees,” said Neil Thomas, president and CEO of Trojan Battery. “I’m excited about the agreement with C&D and believe that it will secure the company’s future and position it for even greater success in the years ahead.”
The Godber family started Trojan Battery in 1925 and built it into one of the leading deep-cycle battery manufacturers in the world. “I am enthusiastic about the transaction that is taking place with KPS and C&D,” said Rick Godber, chairman of the board. “Although this will end 93 years of ownership in Trojan for the Godber family, we all look forward to watching the continued growth and success of the brand and its legacy.”
Thomas added, “I, in conjunction with the Godber family, am very appreciative of the continuous support provided by Charlesbank Capital Partners. Their commitment to Trojan has enabled the business to achieve significant growth and success over the past five years.”
“The synergies between Trojan and C&D will create a global leader in energy storage solutions with two iconic brands, quality products and the ability to supply advanced battery technologies to customers around the world,” Thomas said.
“Given C&D and Trojan’s complementary portfolios of global manufacturing plants, markets and products, this is a highly compelling combination with tremendous strategic value and an exciting multi-segment growth opportunity,” said Armand Lauzon, CEO of C&D. “We are committed to preserving everything about C&D and Trojan that our respective loyal customers, suppliers and employees have come to expect over the years, while also using our larger scale and resources to take advantage of many exciting new opportunities.”
Houlihan Lokey is serving as the lead financial advisor and Goodwin is serving as legal counsel to Trojan Battery for the transaction.