Navigating the Changing Financial Landscape for Professional Golfers and Athletes

Spending over 20 years in the wealth management business, one would think we’ve seen it all – market ups and downs, turbulent economic and socioeconomic conditions, and the once-in-a-lifetime events. New challenges, new disruptions, and unforeseen circumstances, both positive and negative, do however present themselves regularly. At Wealthspire Advisors, we believe in remaining vigilant. We strive to put our clients in positions of financial strength and flexibility, prepare them for necessary navigational changes, and offer guidance in times of opportunity. Wealthspire believes in proactively managing our clients rather than reacting to market conditions.

Recently, we began monitoring the implications of the Saudi-funded, LIV Golf Invitational Series, which kicked off June 9th at an exclusive club outside of London. High profile former champions have announced their participation, nine at the time of this writing[i], with the total purse of each LIV tournament valued at 25 million[ii]. The Team Championship, which will take place during the eighth and final series event of the season, will dole out an additional $50 million[iii]. The series has caused a stir in the golf world, causing a tug-of-war with the PGA. The PGA, founded in 1929, is the organizer of the main professional golf tours by men in the United States and North America and also organizes the PGA Tour, the PGA Tour Champions (age 50 and older), the Korn Ferry Tour (for those players not yet qualified for the PGA Tour), and PGA Tour U (for college golfers). Since inception, the PGA has predominately been the organization where most of the best golfers in the world compete.

Our advisors work with many professional golfers on the PGA Tour and other athletes, including those with NIL (Name, Image, and Likeness) sponsorships, to help them navigate the unique financial challenges and opportunities presented to them throughout their career and beyond. This situation has raised many questions, and we continue to investigate and monitor the evolution of the LIV tournament and its impact on the PGA Tour and its players.

If we take a step back and look at the game of golf, the parallels are quite similar to financial planning. In both instances, the goal is to stay focused, plan for the right shots, and minimize the wrong ones. Individual athletes, such as professional golfers, face different pressures from other professions. Aside from the high stakes of the game itself, outside factors play a part at every event, whether it’s the energy of the crowd, the noise, the weather, or other distractions that could work against a player’s best laid plans. And one tournament can make a significant difference, propelling an individual golfer’s career to unprecedented heights.

As financial advisors, we strive to alleviate and simplify our clients’ financial lives by offering a full range of planning services, including but not limited to financial planning, investment management, trust and estate planning, charitable planning, and tax management. Enabling our golf clients in particular to have the mental freedom to focus on their golf career, business interests, family, and charitable inclinations provides a platform for success.

As new opportunities arise, our goal is to educate and inform our clients, putting them in the best position to make smart and rational financial decisions that will allow them to focus on their true passion – in this case, golf. The decisions we help clients make and guide them through allow us to consider the short, intermediate, and long-term implications financially, professionally, and personally.

Our value system and daily dedication is focused on having a positive financial impact on our clients’ lives. Assets, income, taxes, guarantees, deferred compensation, risk management (both asset and reputational), business interests, banking, lending, and family office services are a few of the main pieces of the pie which help direct decisions. Every individual is unique, so we believe in providing a customizable approach for each one of our clients, specifically designed to help deliver on their financial goals and objectives. It is not “one size fits all”, just like each player’s golf swing is different.

As the landscape continues to change in the golf world, the Wealthspire Advisors team will continue to work in coordination with your agent and trusted advisors as a cohesive unit to guide you through life’s toughest decisions. We are poised to help you succeed.





Wealthspire Advisors is the common brand and trade name used by Wealthspire Advisors LLC, Lenox Wealth Advisors, LLC, Private Capital Group, LLC, and Private Ocean, LLC (collectively, the “Firms”), separate registered investment advisers and subsidiary companies of NFP Corp.
Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Inc. (CFP Board) owns the certification marks CFP®, Certified Financial Planner™, and CFP® (with plaque design) in the United States, which it authorizes use of by individuals who successfully complete CFP Board’s initial and ongoing certification requirements.
The Center for Fiduciary Studies owns the mark AIF®, which it awards to individuals who successfully complete initial and ongoing accreditation requirements.
This information should not be construed as a recommendation, offer to sell, or solicitation of an offer to buy a particular security or investment strategy. The commentary provided is for informational purposes only and should not be relied upon for accounting, legal, or tax advice. While the information is deemed reliable, Wealthspire Advisors cannot guarantee its accuracy, completeness, or suitability for any purpose, and makes no warranties with regard to the results to be obtained from its use. © 2024 Wealthspire Advisors. ©2022 Wealthspire Advisors

John Kovacs

About John Kovacs

John is a managing director based in our Palm Beach Gardens, FL office.

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Rick Van Benschoten

About Richard P. Van Benschoten, CFP®

Based in our NYC office, Rick is Executive Vice President of Business Development.

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