Rob Welsh CEO & Founder FFC Capital Ventures, Inc. Sports Division
Rob, thanks for taking the time to talk with us today. You seem to have had an interesting journey towards starting FFC Capital Ventures, Inc. Let’s go back a bit to discuss how you ended up where you are today.
Thank you, Sanford. It’s great to talk with you. It’s been an interesting journey to where we are today. Being a former US Marine and Minister on staff at a church in San Jose, CA for quite a while, one of our ministries was working with couples. A couple of things happened, one being that my brother passed away and left 5 kids and a wife with no life insurance in 2004. The other was in 2005, that in almost every situation for a couple that I was working with in Ministry, the lack of money had something to do with the issues they had. I was looking for something that would help educate me and families about money, but after going for multiple interviews in the industry with different firms, I realized there was nothing. Essentially there is nothing about money in school, but when you get out, it’s all about the money. Shortly there after I was introduced to a 23 and 25-year-old that were providing financial education with solutions and strategies to help without charging anything. I qualified to work with them and we co-founded a Leadership Development company that provided financial education to the everyday person with the solutions to help empower people.
From there we expanded throughout the US but also into different markets including helping people that had significant money and businesses keep more of their money.
In 2016 I made a decision to move out of California to Texas. We didn’t know anyone but knew what we wanted, and our systems are solid. While coming into Dallas, TX I met an individual that had great relationships with professional athletes, current and former. He had worked for a very successful sports agent and knew the challenges athletes had with money as well as transitioning after sports. He was trying to build a company to support sports agents with concierge services and find a way to help the athletes make money in the off season, particularly from the NFL. I had the piece he needed to incorporate the solutions. Thus, our Sports Division was born. We can provide the education needed for future and current athletes to succeed with money and provide an equity position to make money and own something. We can give understanding on Taxes, Budgeting, how money works, goals and such to empower them to not be taken advantage of; as well as keep more of their money. Athletes pay taxes where they play, and we can help them keep 90+% of that money. Instead of just buying a franchise, we can show them how to create a company without all the money, thus making money off the field or court as well as after the sport. This includes former athletes and giving them an opportunity to utilize their brand and make professional athlete type money while making a difference.
It’s evident that you are passionate and purposeful with your company. You are empowering athletes financially and giving them control over their finances. As we all know, many promises are made to athletes, but your company is actually doing something to help. Share with us the services you offer and why you are driven to “change the game?”
Great question Sanford. We have Strategies that incorporate other experts under one roof per say as a Super Group to help Educate and protect the money as well as reduce taxes including but not limited to writing the agent fees off. Essentially, every Professional Athlete will pay tax where they play and pay upwards of 50% or more in taxes, and our Super Power is that we have the capability to help them keep that money. This works for non-athletes, but Athletes face the biggest challenge of very high incomes and thus high taxes. We have Equity Transition Programs for future and current athletes with mentorship from former professional athletes to help, but also own something and not have the transition struggle. Former athletes also benefit working with us as they can now fund their projects they have that require capital. Our platform is a funding vehicle as well. In addition, we provide Personal and Leadership Development education to help become clear on outcomes and the ability to attain their future goals, as well as being able to give back to the community. Our goal is to help others get to where they want to go, and a big part of that is being able to give back to the community. Part of our programs are the formation or foundations to provide the charitable giving.
What drives me is the injustice of it all. When I started in the industry, it was a passion to help others understand and be able to utilize the strategies the wealthy used, and also understand money so they can save it and have mentorship. That crusade still exists but seeing the injustice of the sports industry really made me mad and I wanted to make a difference. We are creating programs with curriculum to get to the Junior and Senior Student Athletes of the Universities to teach 4 core curriculums that will educate and empower so no one can be taken advantage of. These classes will be taught by the athletes that are alumni’s as well as big brand names.
Rob some may not know that you were a professional bowler. How much did that experience play a part in you: a) relating to athletes and b) the ability to connect with them?
I’m competitive by nature and unfortunately bowling professionally is an individual sport. However, the focus and willingness to sacrifice certain things to win is something that drives all. I did have a mentor and treated it like a business and one of the things I did was, sell stock in ‘Rob Welsh’ to support the money needed. I have the equivalent of a Ph.D. in Personal Development and provide mentorship to many. I can relate with athletes because I understand Human Nature. Really being in the present when your talking with anyone and listening is key. Sincerely and truly having a desire to add value to others is what I live by. I put myself in their shoes and when you speak their language we all get to where we want to go. In the end I relate because I know what it’s like to want to win and everyone wants that, and they want to be somebody. Make people feel special and if you can add value by helping them get to where they are going you are the answer. Essentially, we do this and have the vehicle.
It seems that sometimes the relationship between the agent and the player can still have some barriers between the two. FFC Capital Ventures, Inc seems to try to work closely with both parties. Has there been any push back on either side taking this approach?
What we have found is that like every industry, there are good and bad. There are some very good sports agents and there a lot of sports agents that are just in it for the money. We are a Super Power for a Sports Agent as we separate them from all the rest. Even if you have a very good agent, but they don’t have the money, they can’t compete with larger agencies that have the capital. We are creating a major line of equity for these particular agents to compete. I believe if you can educate the future and current athletes to know what questions to ask and how it all works with mentorship, they will be able to make correct choices and especially not lose money.
It seems the business of sports starts far before college. There are sports camps, academies, leagues and organizations that connect to “potential pros” rather early in life. This could represent a potential huge market for your company. Is there anything that you are currently doing to help the athlete before he or she goes pro?
Great question! We are creating programs with curriculum to get to the Junior and Senior Student Athletes of the Universities to teach 4 core curriculums that will educate and empower so no one can be taken advantage of. These classes will be taught by the athletes that are alumni’s as well as big brand names. I believe if you can educate the future athletes to know what questions to ask and how it all works with mentorship, they will be able to make correct choices and especially not lose money. The Business / Entrepreneur program is essential as it will have a mentorship program internal to it, and this will help eliminate the Identity issues we see today.
Many are attracted to the business of sports. You have found great success in it. If you were mentoring a startup founder and was asked what are the keys to your success, what would you tell them?
Align with the right experts and colleagues that together can add value. A key to it all is that it’s all about the relationships and that may take patience to foster those. If you have a value you bring, try aligning with a group or company that needs your value. Don’t just try to go on your own. I have noticed that many are just focused on a certain piece but should align and partner with others to offer bigger value. In the end it takes time and be patient, but if you’re not passionate about what your doing and why your doing it, it probably won’t go far. Athletes and people in general, but especially future, current and former professional athletes need to know you have their best interests in mind.
Let’s say you can take two legendary athletes with you to bowl a couple of games. Who are the two you are taking?
😊 Lebron James and Roger Staubach
Thanks Rob! Before you go, where can an athlete or company get in contact with you directly?
(469) 990-7990 and/or Rob@ffccapitalventures.com
It has been an honor to have you. All the best!
Thank you Sanford and it’s been an honor to be here.