LAKE BUENA VISTA, Florida | What would you do with $1 million?
In November, Sei Young Kim was presented with that question when she took home that much, and then some, when she captured the $1.5 million prize that came with winning the 2019 season-ending CME Group Tour Championship. To date, it’s the biggest payday in the history of women’s golf.
“How many zeros in there?” Kim said she kept asking herself when she saw the check deposited into her bank account. “It's big money to me.”
The Canadian music group Barenaked Ladies once sang about the variety of items that could be purchased with that amount of money in their hit, “If I Had a Million Dollars.” They rattled off everything from a house to a llama to exclusive artwork.
But Kim didn’t buy any of those things. Instead, she partied. And invested the rest.
“Every day, kind of a party. And I ate a lot,” Kim said laughing. “I bought a lot of dinners.”
Those dinners were for friends and family who celebrated Kim’s 10th career victory back home in the Republic of Korea. But it wasn’t all fun and partying during the Tour’s break. Kim continued to work on her game in hopes of carrying the momentum of her victory into the New Year.
She has big goals for 2020.
At No. 5 in the Rolex Rankings, Kim has more wins than any active player on the Tour without a major championship. She is the highest-ranked Korean without a major. Adding one to her growing resume is a top priority. Returning to the Olympic Games is also on her bucket list.
“That's my biggest goal this year,” Kim said Thursday after carding a bogey-free 66 to start her season at the Diamond Resorts Tournament of Champions.
During Wednesday’s pro-am she was paired with a Coca-Cola executive, who she heard was quite wealthy. She sought his advice for how she should manage her big payday.
“He told me don't change your real life, just keep it simple, and just make a lot of money,” Kim said about his advice to invest and save. “He recommended it to me, so it was a good recommendation.”
So, she won’t be purchasing a new mansion or a llama. There won’t be a Picasso on her wall anytime soon. Instead, she’s just going to keep on watching in awe as those zeroes in her bank account keep on growing.