The late Elena Pampoulova-Bergomi was born into a tennis family, and both of her parents were also professional tennis players. At just 10 years old, Elena represented her country at the under 12’s Junior European Champions in France. By the age of 12, she had become Europe’s number 3 player. At the age of 14, Elena Pampoulova-Bergomi became number 2 in Europe, after being defeated by Monica Seles in the final.
Elena Pampoulova-Bergomi won singles and doubles tournaments, and participated in the Olympics in Barcelona in 1992. She played for the German Federation team, as well as winning many trophies as part of the Bundesliga team.
In October 1999, Elena sustained a career-ending sport injury, receiving surgery at a famous sports clinic in Switzerland. During this period, she had many interviews for jobs in the finance sector, with the big banks actively seeking out individuals with contacts within the glamorous world of entertainment and professional sports. Initially, she was not interested at all, attending interviews out of curiosity. After 11 years of professional tennis, she found it a new and exciting experience.
Having constantly trained since childhood and spent so many years on the tennis court, Elena Pampoulova-Bergomi began to tire of solely living in the sport world. She decided to give the world of finance a try, launching her second career as a financial advisor in 2001.
The international contacts she had maintained during her tennis years were a great advantage when she embarked on her new career. She also benefited from being multilingual, speaking English, Russian, German and several other Eastern European languages. After a decade of working for some of the biggest banks in Switzerland – under the supervision of well-known and experienced senior private bankers – Elena became managing partner of a Zurich-based asset management company in 2010 and was happy to be her own boss again.
The former WTA Tour player provided financial advice to tennis players in a bid to give something back to the sport, and she advised young tennis stars on how to plan for a life after tennis.
Elena Pampoulova-Bergomi credited her success to her parents and their tremendous support and devotion, particularly in the earlier years of her tennis career. She also attributed her success to her character, describing herself as an honest, dedicated, and focused person, following set goals in life.
When asked which brought her more joy in life, tennis or finance, Elena Pampoulova-Bergomi acknowledged that tennis was always a big joy for her. Even after her retirement from sport, she still loved to play and missed the competition. Tennis taught Elena lifelong lessons, and she reflected later in life that she would not be where she was, enjoying all of her success in the finance world too, without tennis.