Apps / Sports / Startups

Why Aaron Rosenthal ditched political campaigns and built a golf app

"I thought I could have a greater impact," Rosenthal said. Golfswell promises to "fit more rounds into your life" by speeding up play.

Golfswell seeks to reduce wait times by tracking golfers on the course. (Image courtesy of Aaron Rosenthal)

Aaron Rosenthal learned to play golf with his father. Now, he’s taking his game to the next level: with an app.
Rosenthal loves golfing through and through — maybe even more than he loves politics — but he thinks the sport would be more pleasant if wait times on the green were reduced.
“I was just playing golf overseas in Scotland,” he said. “and they play a lot faster over there.”
The problem is, golf courses are mired in an archaic system: “They have an older gentleman who just drives around the golf court in a cart, asking people to play faster,” he said.
So — presto — he devised an app that would track the position of golfers on the course and help them visualize how far they are from the hole.
The app is free for players and costs golf courses about $200 a month.
His startup, Golfswell, is currently a team of three working in the incubator space 1776. But the company will be seeking investments this fall, said Rosenthal.
One golf course, TPC Potomac, has already signed on to use the app starting in October, and a few other area courses have expressed interest, he said.
Rosenthal, who grew up in Bethesda, used to be in a rather more stressful line of work: politics. For a decade, he worked on political campaigns, first at the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee and then on Capitol Hill.

“I thought I could have a greater impact … by starting this company.” he said. “If you can get people to play more golf and be outside and be in nature, you’ll make them happier.”
Companies: 76 Forward

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