Inaugural Spring Clean Challenge reinforces Jani-King’s support for PGA Tour caddies

With so much money flowing through the PGA Tour these days, it’s easy to forget that not everyone fans see walking inside the ropes is flying private, bunking at the Four Seasons and chowing down post-round on the prime ribeye at The Palm.

Duane “Dewey” Bock, caddie to Sepp Straka, noted that there are plenty of Tour caddies who are living on tight budgets while working for lesser-known players. That goes unnoticed by most of the Tour’s prominent sponsors, but not by Jani-King International, the global commercial cleaning franchise company with deep ties to the Tour, especially its caddies.

A decade ago, Jani-King carved out a niche investing in loopers, and now provides stipends to more than 150 Tour caddies who carry the ubiquitous Jani-King branded golf towels.

“When you have a company like Jani-King step up and provide some income to caddies who are carrying their towel, that’s huge and very much appreciated,” Bock said.

This year Jani-King took its engagement with the Tour to a whole new level with its first-ever Spring Clean Challenge, a competition that took place among five players over nine events, culminating at the PGA Championship.

Bock’s boss, Sepp Straka, won the Spring Clean Challenge, and noted that one of the best things about it was that “it was something that Dewey and I did together – so now he has bragging rights, too!”

Sepp Straka (L) and caddie Duane “Dewey” Bock (R)

Straka got on a heater in mid-April, posting two top-10 finishes along with a T-11 at the Zurich Classic and a T-16 at the Masters, where, for good measure, he also aced the fifth hole in the Wednesday Par 3 Contest.

“We gave it a really good run at the Masters and a few other events – but (the highlight) has to be the hole-in-one during the Masters Par 3 Contest!” Straka said.

With the victory came a $30,000 payday for Straka – not a huge number by PGA Tour standards, but as Bock said, it was a “cool concept in the spring to keep our energy up.” Bock collected a $5,000 bonus for the victory, underscoring Jani-King’s commitment to supporting Tour caddies.

Duane “Dewey” Bock

“In the big scheme of things, is the bonus money going to change things for us? No, but it is extremely nice, and that’s what Jani-King has done for us,” said Bock, who said the other caddies already have reminded him that he’ll be picking up the tab the next time they get together for beers or dinner. “To step up and give us that opportunity to earn a little extra income, that’s awesome.”

CBS golf announcer Colt Knost first struck up a partnership with Jani-King during his playing days and renewed it this year, serving as host and organizer of the Spring Clean Challenge.

“They’ve always been awesome, so supportive of the game of golf, especially the caddies,” said Knost, who’s hoping to make the contest “even more exciting” in 2025. “You see so many of them out there using the Jani-King towel. They love golf and it’s so cool to see their support.”

For Jani-King, the alignment with the Tour and its caddies has been a natural fit with the company’s core business. Mike Biggs, Jani-King’s senior vice president of sports partnerships, said that feedback from many regional franchisors, the company’s major stakeholders, has shown golf to be a popular and valuable sports marketing tool for national benefit and a broad range of franchisees.  And the towel carried by caddies reinforces Jani-King’s commitment to being the leader in the multibillion-dollar commercial cleaning franchise industry.

“Our partnership with the Association of Professional Tour Caddies has been great for increasing name recognition within our top national sports branding focus of professional golf,” Biggs said. “The next step in this partnership is telling the story of the company behind the towel logo, while tying into our longtime relationship and other assets with the PGA Tour. That was the goal for the Spring Clean Challenge and I’m looking forward to ways we can make it even better in 2025.”

With programs such as the Spring Clean Challenge, Jani-King only figures to strengthen its ties to the PGA Tour and its caddies. Caddies carrying the ubiquitous Jani-King towel already have partnered on 144 Tour victories and four majors, and that number only figures to grow rapidly in the years to come.

“That just shows how much the caddies appreciate what the company is doing for us,” Bock said. “To have that many wins, the numbers speak to how much the caddies appreciate it and want to carry their towel.”

Story originally appeared on GolfWeek