Why the boom in the event management industry?
There's a media clutter and that has changed people's responses - viewers no longer watch just one channel, or read just one newspaper. This means that advertisers are trying to break the clutter by using experiential marketing or event management, which allows you to connect with the user. It shows quicker and better results than traditional advertising.
Events have now become an important segment of television content, with non-fiction shows, reality shows and live performances forming 50 per cent of television.
How does the Indian event management industry compare with the West?
We are getting there, though we still have a lot to learn. We don't have access to as much capital or technology as big companies in the West do. But some of our biggest companies have begun bidding for international events like the Asian Games, 30 years of Mauritian independence, the Beijing Games, etc. In a few years, Indian companies will become global players and global players will come here looking for talent.
In which sections do you expect to see maximum growth?
I expect retail activation and brand activation to become much more important. We can expect to see event management companies specialising in non-fiction television shows.
Weddings and birthday parties may seem like big businesses, but they're run mostly by small-time organisers and form only a small chunk of the event management spectrum.