Ion Whykes

Ion WhykesCFP® Dip FP PSM OAM

Financial Adviser

Prior to his career in financial planning, Ion worked in education. He is a past president of the Victorian Principals Association and has been awarded a Public Service Medal for his services to Education.

Ion has worked as a financial adviser for over 20 years. While planning for retirement following his career in education, Ion developed a passionate interest in financial planning and begun a highly successful second career. His knowledge of the education department and its unique superannuation structures enabled him to provide a truly unique service offering to his clients.

Ion is also an active member of the community and The Rotary Club of Healesville and was awarded the Order of Australia Medal in 2014 for his service to the community.

Ion is a Certified Financial Planner®, a member of the Financial Planning Association and holds a Diploma of Financial Planning.

Sam Ball

Sam BallAFP® Dip FS (FP)

Financial Adviser

Strongly believing in the importance giving clients an individual and tailored service, and wanting to work in an environment that fostered independence and autonomy, Sam was one of the founders of YX Ball Financial.

Sam prides himself on garnering an in depth knowledge of his clients individual situations so he can advise them as to how best to maximise their available resources and achieve their specific objectives. 

His focus on strategy coupled with his ability to deal with his clients as individuals, not just account numbers means he has an ability to put clients minds at ease as soon as they walk through the door.

In his spare time Sam enjoys an active lifestyle including surfing, skiing and cycling.

Sam is a member of the Financial Planning Association and holds a Diploma of Financial Planning.

Michael Pappas

Michael PappasAFP® Bus (Mgt) Dip FS (FP) A Fin

Financial Adviser

Michael founded YX Ball Financial along with Sam and Ion to ensure that as a business they could provide the best possible outcomes for their clients.

Michael enjoys helping people achieve their individual goals, by making subject matter that is often confusing and stressful easy to understand and comfortable. He also likes that the industry is very people focused and finds it immensely satisfying to build long term relationships with clients and see them reap the benefits of their financial plans.

As one of the directors Michael works closely with the more junior members of the team to help them develop their skills and their careers.

In his spare time, Michael spends time cycling, running, swimming and competing in Triathalons. He also likes to Ski and spend time with this friends and family – especially his young niece and nephew.

Michael is a member of the Financial Planning Association and holds a Diploma of Financial Services and a Bachelor of Business.


Elliott Young

Elliott YoungAFP® AdvDipFP BA

Financial Adviser

Elliott decided on a career financial planning because he felt that he could help alleviate much of the stress that many people find to be associated with their personal finance and the decisions surrounding it.

He is passionate about the work he does at YX Ball Financial because the needs of the clients are always put first, and because of the progressive culture that the directors nurture.

His areas of interest include retirement planning, wealth creation and investing, with a special focus on responsible investment.

Elliott enjoys international politics, travelling, running and rock climbing.

Elliott is a member of the Financial Planning Association and the Responsible Investment Association of Australasia. He holds an Advanced Diploma of Financial Planning, a Bachelor of Arts and is currently completing the Life Risk Specialist course.

John Bell

John BellAFP® LLB B Comm DFP

Financial Adviser

After 35 years working as a solicitor, John found his calling within the financial services industry. With a passion for providing his clients with comprehensive, holistic and meaningful advice, John is particularly interested in retirement planning, investing and estate planning. He also works with his clients on specific individual problems that may involve the law.

John is a keen lawn bowler who also played two AFL games with Collingwood in 1969.

John is a member of the Financial Planning Association and the Law Institute of Victoria. John holds a Diploma of Financial Planning, a Bachelor of Commerce and a Bachelor of Laws.


Kelly Lai

Kelly Lai


With a keen interest in the implementation of financial strategies as well as retirement planning, social security and aged care, Kelly decided on a career in finance to help people shape their futures and help them to recognise that they can achieve their financial goals.

She enjoys working at YX Ball Financial because of the supportive team environment, the clear focus on clients and the opportunity for personal and professional development within the organisation.

In her spare time Kelly likes to travel and explore new cities, try new bars and restaurants in Melbourne and spending time with her two dogs, Toffee and Chester.

Kelly holds a Bachelor of Commerce majoring in Finance and Marketing.

Client Relations Team

Aruni Arambewela

Aruni Arambewela

Client Relationship Manager

Aruni has close to 20 years of experience working in Finance, Banking and FMCG sectors with a focus on marketing and customer service. She enjoys working with clients to implement their financial plans, helping to make what can often be a complex process less daunting.

Aruni is able to assist clients with account enquiries, transactions and implementation of their financial plans across a wide range of areas.

Aruni loves to spend time with her family, cooking, reading and travelling. 

Aruni holds a Masters of Business Administration, a Bachelor of Commerce and a Diploma in Marketing.

Jesse Gaarenstroom

Jesse Gaarenstroom

Client Services Officer

As soon as Jesse took his first class in financial planning, he knew that was the direction he wanted his career to take. He is interested in wealth creation, family budgeting and the difference effective planning can make in breaking the poverty cycle.

He sees YX Ball as a firm which always has its client’s best interests at heart and an organization that is striving to do better, both in the community and the industry as a whole.

Jesse rides motorbikes and is passionate about fitness. He has competed in powerlifting and likes spending time with his family.

Jesse holds a Bachelor of Commerce majoring in Finance and Financial Planning.

Want to find out more? Contact us.

At YX Ball Financial, we concentrate on developing personalised financial strategies which make the most of your financial resources. To find out how we can assist you, contact us today.


Client Testimonial

I first saw Ion Whykes in 2006 after he was recommended to me by a teaching colleague.

Initially I was only after some general advice with regard to salary sacrificing, but found Ion to be so knowledgeable, caring and helpful that I decided to follow his advice and accept his recommendations. Although I live 400km from Melbourne it has been so easy to deal with Ion and his team. They have answered every one of my queries, no matter how minor, promptly and professionally.

As I have a very limited understanding of the financial world, I have really appreciated the guidance and support I have received from Ion. From our first meeting, I have found Ion to be approachable and very understanding and I believe he has my best interests at heart. He explains things in an easy to understand way and I am grateful for the detailed, personal financial advice he has given me and the changes he has made to my salary sacrificing, superannuation and investment arrangements.

As I near the end of my full-time working life, I feel reassured that I will be financially comfortable for the rest of my life and that my financial arrangements are in safe hands.

- Marion B.

Client Testimonial

Since retiring in 1999 Ion has been our trusted financial advisor.

Coming from an Education background, his knowledge regarding superannuation was outstanding and he was able to explain its implications for us in easy to understand terms free from money-market jargon. He developed an investment strategy around our personal goals and this has withstood the test of difficult times in the financial world. This portfolio is a well-integrated and diversified investment plan across all asset classes.

We trust his advice and meet with him yearly to review, adjust and fine tune our investments in light of our changing circumstances. Ion always keeps an open line of communication with us so that we always know where we stand.

We have appreciated the support, guidance and hands-on approach Ion has provided us.

- Gary and Wendy B.

Client Testimonial

Following my initial consultation some 14 years ago, Ion provided me with several written options for my personal situation which he thoroughly and carefully explained. He then answered any of my questions and allowed me the time to decide on which option I would take.

I felt and still feel extremely confident in his ability to ensure that my best financial interests continue to be a priority in his thinking.

Ion takes a personable approach to each of our annual reviews and when necessary makes appropriate suggestions for altering my portfolio to my benefit. I have had no qualms in recommending Ion to many friends and colleagues who are in need of financial advice.

- Helen C.

Client Testimonial

We have found Ion Whykes to be a financial advisor who:

- Graeme and Libby S.

Client Testimonial

Ion Whykes has been our financial advisor for sixteen years - and what a marvellous difference this has made to our financial situation, and consequently, our lifestyle.

Ion is very knowledgeable about salary packaging, ESSSuper, private super and Government Aged entitlements and as teachers (now retired) each of these has been very important to us at different stages in our journey with Ion.

He is a most "on the ball", approachable financial advisor and a man of great integrity.

- Glenice & Ian W.

Client Testimonial

The confidence and support Ion and his team have provided to us to ensure our investments meet our future needs has been outstanding.

Ion, as our personal advisor, provides sound financial advice in his quiet manner. Ion and the staff of YX Ball are always available when we have a query.

We became clients after recommendations of friends and we have no hesitation in also recommending Ion and YX Ball to potential investors.

- Clive and Rae W.

Client Testimonial

My wife and I have been with Sam since 2005, through a challenging financial period.

Not only have we come out OK, we have ALWAYS been treated with consideration, thoughtfulness and as individuals, not a number or just another client.

We would recommend Sam to anyone who wants an intelligent, kind and thoughtful advisor ... not an easy combination to find!

- David and Pauline W.

Client Testimonial

Michael is a thorough and professional Financial Planner.

He always puts my interests first, and provides balanced advice to help me make investment decisions. I would have no hesitation in recommending Michael as a Financial Planner.

- Nick C.

Client Testimonial

Michael is professional in all aspects of his role and displays a genuine interest in the plans I have made for my retirement, including unexpected events.

He is also very patient and explains options slowly and clearly.

- Ann O.