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South African star Siyoli Waters talks money

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Siyoli on selling ice cream on the beach, and trophies seized as “dangerous weapons”
Source: Sunday Times Business (Johannesburg)

siyoliactionSIYOLI WATERS earned her provincial colours in hockey, athletics and tennis before falling in love with squash. Today she is South Africa’s top female player. She tells Jana Marais about shopping for dresses in England and budgeting for spaghetti.

How responsible are you with money?

I am generous, yet I have a clear awareness of my financial position.

What is the worst thing you have done for money?

Selling ice cream as a teenager on the beach on Christmas Day and New Year. At that stage of life, I really hoped that I would not run into people I knew.

What is the worst thing you have done with money?

Lose it.

If you could buy a house anywhere in the world, where would it be?

I have travelled the world and I know that there is no place like Cape Town.

What is your favourite souvenir from your squash travels?

The squash trophies I am able to bring back to South Africa if they are not seized at border security checkpoints as “dangerous weapons”.

Do you carry cash or do you prefer plastic money?

I prefer plastic. I carry a very small amount of cash on me to limit spontaneous spending.

How do you tip?

I am a generous tipper. I have been in their shoes before.

Do you believe in personal financial advisers?

If you can get the experts to share your load of responsibilities, do it. At the moment, I am fortunate to have people around me that act as informal advisers.

waterscourtWhat is the most expensive item you have ever bought?

As a teenager, I would have said my dress to the final high school dance while doing A levels in England. I used all the money I had earned as a coach at a squash camp and went shopping at some high-end stores with girls who had the equivalent of celebrities as parents. It cost £125 — and I wore it twice. Also, buying food in restaurants in the Cayman Islands on a limited budget in my first year on squash tour: R300 for a plate of spaghetti bolognese. Now I would probably say my car — R95,000 in one payment.

If money was not an issue, what is the most expensive item you would buy for yourself?

My own plane with a mini gym. It would make travelling on tour so much easier. I would love to buy a TopGolf franchise.

What is your most treasured possession?

Can I say my husband? He is “mine”, after all. I am not one that holds on to things too much. I guess I could tell you my most convenient possession: life just does not run smoothly without my phone.

How did your childhood experience influence your attitude to money?

I come from a family that is quite private with money matters and has always made people feel respected regardless of what their bank balance is. It taught me not to dilute my dreams and goals owing to a lack of funds. Your route to achieving them just might look a little different to that of your peers.

How does your profession influence the way you deal with your personal finance?

My approach at the start was different because of cash-flow hurdles. Back then, I lived from month to month, from pay cheque to pay cheque. A few years later, an increase in sponsorships from Laser Logistics and business partnerships has made it easier to plan ahead.

Do you have a monthly budget?

In our home, I am sad to say we do not use one yet, although we are generally not big spenders. For my squash tours, I have a bi-monthly budget.

If you were given R5m, how would you spend it?

I would invest about R2m so that I would not be able to touch it for at least three years; R1.75m to purchase property to rent out; R500,000 as a short-term investment for charitable purposes; R500,000 to plan my ideal squash calendar year; R150,000 for immediate needs; and R100,000 to trade on the stock market.

• This article was first published in Sunday Times: Business Times

Source: Business Day Live

 

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