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NBA Star Turns Team Player For High-Profile Clients

April 12, 2017

While the superstar advisor may be increasingly a thing of the past, teamwork is the name of the game in high net worth client service, one former basketball star-turned-advisor tells Wealth Management.

Chris Dudley, a journeyman center in the NBA from 1987 to 2003, began his wealth management career over a decade ago and has worked his way up to the position of senior wealth advisor and director of sports and entertainment at $7.1 billion Boston Private Wealth. He’s based in Beverly Hills, Calif.

He maintains that serving high net worth clients – especially star athletes – requires an understanding of your own firm’s limits and an ability to work closely with not only the client’s team of lawyers and accountants, but also with other close advisors. In an interview with the publication he points out that athletes and entertainers often work with specialist insurance brokers who regard high-profile clients as different from regular folk. While a client’s superstar status might garner special rates, the risks of their particular line of work or their celebrity image will likely also be taken into consideration by insurers. Such circumstances have unique impacts on financial planning and asset allocation.

Dudley also urges advisors to attain wealth management qualifications if they are to advise high-profile clients. Early on in his career he prioritized attaining his CFP accreditation so he could not only exemplify his professionalism, but also be equipped to provide the best possible financial planning advice to his clients.

He tells Wealth Management that highly-paid athletes are particularly vulnerable to the sort of advisors “who can sell snow to Eskimos” but are the very clients who need a greater level of service and holistic advice.

Dudley explains the reason many pro athletes go broke is because they make large amounts of money early in their careers and don’t have the experience to manage their finances, no matter their personal background.

By FA-IQ Staff
  • To read the Wealth Management article cited in this story, click here.