ISLAMABAD: In the city that always sleeps, at least according to some, times are changing. A growing segment of the population feels the need to go out more often, socialise, throw big birthday and farewell parties, bridal and baby showers and so on. What was initially a monopoly of a handful of pricy event management companies is now turning into a race between young entrepreneurs striving to cater to both extravagant functions and economical events.
Revelations Event Management and Decorators run by a young entrepreneur Hira Ali, provides event management services at affordable rates. The company really took off after Ali and her team organised several children’s birthday parties. In this day and age of creative promotional tactics, Revelation’s popularity spread by word of mouth alone.
On the other hand, Overseas Event Management run by Muhammad Ibrahim sprung from the idea that current companies were overcharging their customers. Ibrahim quit his day job at a bank and set up a shop catering to weddings, corporate seminars and fashion shows. He recently forayed into organising a concert venture featuring Rahat Fateh Ali Khan called the “Prayers for Peace”
Both Ali and Ibrahim were appalled by the current rates and entered the market to accommodate people with limited budgets. Ali provides customised events and budgets allowing her clients to pick and choose what they feel most comfortable with. Aside from event management, Revelations also includes innovative packages like ‘12 am at your doorstep’, where her team delivers cakes and presents to loved ones at midnight. ‘Forever 26’ caters to couples, where candlelit dinners are organised at Pir Sohawa so couples can spend quality time in a private area against the backdrop of the city’s sprawling metropolis behind them.
What began as a hobby for these aspiring entrepreneurs has transformed into a full-fledged business. “I used to see big event management companies organising concerts and decided if they can do it, we can do it too and maybe even do it bigger and better,” Ibrahim said. Speaking to both young entrepreneurs, what differentiates them from the established pack is their enthusiasm and passion for the business.
Though there is still some reticence in handing over event planning to a much younger, less experienced team, watching the entrepreneurial instincts of a new generation is an encouraging sign in an economy that desperately needs it.
Published in The Express Tribune, December 3rd, 2011.
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