Swamped by big-ticket cancellations, the events industry looks to the government for a helping hand.
Navneeth Mohan, 42, Director and Chief Executive, Laqshya Live Experiences, Gurugram
For Navneeth Mohan, October through April is the busiest time of the year for the events industry. But this March, he has received 17 cancellations while all events planned for April have been put off. To say that times are tough would be an understatement. It is unprecedented, says Mohan, an events industry veteran of two decades. If India hits stage 3 of COVID-19, the entire events industry could get wiped out.
According to the Event and Entertainment Management Association, events worth about Rs 3,000 crore have been cancelled by corporates alone. The destination wedding business, which by one estimate is expected to reach a market size of Rs 45,000 crore by 2020, has also taken a big hit.
The industry is making representations to the government for relief, including collateral-free credit to pay salaries and tax exemptions. The industry is also working with banks and NBFCs for credit lines. A state government owes my company over a crore of rupees, says Mohan. Most corporates we work with are diligent with [payment] cycles. Hopefully, Indian companies won’t go into a default mode.