Sports professionals: a specialist banking service for all your financial needs

At Weatherbys Private Bank we can provide specialist banking and wealth advice services for sporting professionals. Rebekah Guntrip, a self-confessed sporting enthusiast, explains why trust and a personal service are at the heart of what her team does.

We understand the unique and complex needs surrounding a sports professional’s finances. Most sports clients are younger, generally in their 20s rather than 50s, and haven’t had time or the inclination to manage their own finances. Understandably, many are also not used to having such a high level of wealth so quickly thrust upon them. This is where we come in.

Our goal is to make our sports clients’ lives, irrespective of their sport, as easy as possible, by helping them with their day-to-day banking needs. After all, our sports professional clients want to have total focus on their sporting career. In many ways, our service is a one-stop financial shop where we can help with banking – both personal and business – investments, lending and insurance.

Since our founding over 250 years ago linked to horse racing, one of the longest-established sports, we have always innovated while also maintaining our focus on providing exceptional levels of personal service. We recognise that today’s sporting professionals also have specific and often complex needs.

A truly bespoke service

As with all our private bank clients, our service is truly bespoke. For example, we were able to help with the lending requirements for a client that was moving towards the end of their career, when other lenders may not have been able to. We arranged a bridging loan that was converted to a long-term mortgage on an interest-only basis, which could then be cleared faster by bullet repayments.

“Unlike most people who plan to retire in their 60s, sports professionals are likely to retire from competitive sport in their 30s” – Rebekah Guntrip, Private Banker

It’s the personal service that many of our clients particularly like, and our trust, which is crucial given the attention many sports stars receive. They can make contact whenever they need to. Indeed, it’s not unusual to receive a message at the weekend on a card-related matter that needs clearing up sooner rather than later. But that is part and parcel of our service – making their financial life easy.

Image rights

Many of our sports clients have an Image Rights company. In this case we can provide business banking alongside their personal banking services, meaning all their financial affairs can be looked after in one place.

Investment & wealth advice

In addition to our standard private banking services – current accounts, deposit accounts, lending and foreign exchange – we also offer our Investment & Wealth Advice service.

As with all our clients at Weatherbys Private Bank, we look at every aspect of their financial life to gain a clear picture of their finances – and it is no different for sports professionals. We consider assets, income and outgoings, and assess future spending requirements. Once we have taken the time to understand their goals and looked at their current investments, we apply our three key areas of expertise: cash flow and tax planning, structuring affairs efficiently, and investments.

As part of this, we focus on having a financial roadmap in place, in the form of a cash flow plan, that will help clients to map out their financial requirements and demonstrate how various scenarios might affect those needs.

Why you need a different cash flow plan as a sports professional

The key difference for our sports clients when it comes to financial planning is that the window for earning significant amounts of money is limited – professional sports is not like a typical career. Unlike most people who plan to retire in their 60s, sports professionals are likely to retire from competitive sport in their 30s (depending on the sport). Every client is unique – for example, a rugby player’s professional career-span may be longer depending on whether they play in the backs or the forwards. We have also had a client whose career ended abruptly due to injury. So we check to see whether the appropriate insurances are in place and can draw up emergency financial plans if required.

Managing a fluctuating income

Income can also frequently change – sometimes sports professionals are paid a monthly salary and at other times a large lump sum. We help our sports clients adjust to the way their income comes in. Pay can rise significantly if they become an international, for instance, and they will need to have a cash flow plan to accommodate this.