Since launching Live Wire Entertainment 12 years ago, Imran Sadiq has been putting on some of the country’s best parties and events. AsiaLIFE finds out more about Cambodia’s evolving events industry. Photography by Lim Sokchanlina.
Tell us a bit about Live Wire.
We started in 2005 from humble beginnings, organising small scale events, such as parties, gala dinners and so on. Since then, we have grown, and deal with many main scale and larger events in Cambodia that include international and regional clientele.
What was the event landscape like when you first started?
Back then, there were just a handful of main event organisers with the capability to manage events to international standards so the demand was great, and it was challenging to meet the standards required by international clients.
How has this changed?
A lot of small individuals, who roughly have around two to four years’ experience in managing local events, are penetrating the high-demand market. Therefore, we have seen a lot of small- and medium-sized companies mushrooming in Cambodia during the last few years. Cambodia is also constantly developing. A lot more international companies and brands are entering the market and this is helping the industry to evolve.
How do you make events special?
Every event is special. It is a matter of creating different levels of expectation of delivery either to the client or the crowd and consumer. Live Wire mostly deals with special events, which means we have created a new trend in the market. We can see this has been followed by other event agencies in Cambodia. A side that we also deliver to every scale of event is that we never forget to place a touch of our expertise and a bit of the personal.
What are the challenges of putting on events?
Well, an event is all about accepting the challenges that come with the job. The events industry itself is a challenging market and therefore it has been, and always will be, our goal to solve every issue or difficulty with every event we make.
How do you overcome them?
It is all in the planning and expecting, or being prepared, to handle and manage problems that come in the way.
What is the most extravagant party you have arranged?
Live Wire Events has been in events entertainment for the last 12 years, and we have a lot of wonderful memories. It’s really hard to say, but if we were to place a finger on the most extravagant event it would be a couple, such as Hennessy Artistry in which we were given the opportunity to handle various international and local talents for the concert. Then there’s no forgetting one of the biggest talk-of-the town concerts, Smart’s Jessie J gig in 2015. This was an experience that we won’t forget easily and we worked with experienced personnel from all different levels to make it happen.
How have clients’ requests and tastes changed?
Clients have evolved in their taste and expectations rapidly in the last few years. This is due to the high demand of events that has been growing and the high expectations to be better in a competing market in presenting either their brand or product to the general market. This is actually a positive move from clients as we can see the events industry in Cambodia grow in pace with other countries across Southeast Asia.
How did you get into events?
I was in the entertainment line for years and landed in Cambodia. After a few years here, I decided that the events industry could change for the better with quality entertainment and production. Overall, it was a move I saw was necessary to develop the events industry in Cambodia at that time.
What are your tips for hosting an event?
Event management is all about planning. While most inexperienced event personnel only plan for the event, the most experienced always prepare for plan B. We all know, it’s very seldom that everything falls into place, either during the setup or the event itself. Always have a plan B for everything. Like a wise man once said, “To fail to plan is planning to fail”. Next would be understanding the entire event objective, this would be to know what you want to do and want to achieve from the event. The last thing is budgeting. Without proper budgeting, everything can go haywire. Therefore, it is important to work around the budget that is given and make the best out of it. Not all big events require high costs, with a little focus on the budget everything is possible.
What direction will the industry take in the future?
I’ve lived in Cambodia for 17 years and have seen tremendous growth. This will continue into the future, we can see it daily with real estate and businesses opening. This provides a need for business and launch events, as well as major corporate conferences and other meetings. The MICE (meetings, incentives, conference and events) market is also growing, although for now that is mainly centred in Siem Reap. There are many future opportunities here.
For more information on Live Wire Entertainments, visit livewire-ent.biz, or find them on Facebook.