For rookie Dylan Ababou, it’s never too early to prepare for life after basketball.
So while most professional athletes his age sink their fat paychecks into fancy cars and the latest gadgets, the Ginebra rising star has started investing in businesses which he hopes would give him a comfortable life once his career is over.
One such venture is DJ’s Carwash, which the Filipino-Moroccan forward put up with childhood friend Jerry Sison as partner.
Conveniently located inside the compound of a Seaoil gasoline station at the corner of Del Monte Avenue and Felipe Street in Quezon City, the carwash has attracted a steady stream of customers since it opened in September 2010.
The business partners put up a P90,000 capital for the venture and employ six workers, grossing about P1,300 on a good day but “unfortunately zero on a bad day, lalo na kapag may bagyo,” Ababou chuckled.
“Kung gusto mo talaga magka-pera sa panahon ngayon, magtayo ka ng business,” said the 25-year-old Ababou. “Habang maaga, mag-business na tayo, pag-aralan natin mabuti yung business at magkaroon tayo ng feasibility study.”
A hands-on owner, Ababou actively promotes his business on social networking sites Facebook and Twitter and through texts to friends, and it is not uncommon to see him hanging out and helping out in the shop during his free time.
The partners have also come up with promos that give out freebies to loyal customers, and they have extended their business hours to past midnight to attract cabbies with no time to avail of their services during the day.
As a result, their growing clientele now include his former Gilas teammates Mark Barroca, Jason Ballesteros and Rey Guevarra as well as Sison’s celebrity friends like actor Carlo Maceda and rocker Jamir Garcia.
A first-round pick of Red Bull Barako who was later shipped in a trade to Ginebra, Ababou has signed a lucrative two-year rookie contract and – the way he is playing so far – figures to have a long career in the pro ranks.
However, Ababou, who earned a degree in Behavioral Science during his playing years with University of Santo Tomas’ Tigers, is also very much aware that a basketball career is just a freak injury away from being over.
From his earnings as a member of the Gilas program, he has also purchased a condominium unit which he rents out and has invested in network marketing. He also dabbles in the buy-and-sell business.
“Malaking tulong talaga yung basketball sa akin, sa pamilya, at sa mga kaibigan ko. Nagkaroon ako ng pang-invest sa business na gusto ko,” Ababou said.