The founder of Light House Studios explains how he launched a business during the financial crisis
One of the qualities of a good entrepreneur is being able to see opportunities in seemingly difficult situations.
Even in the most dire scenarios, there are some people who are able to pick out the one positive and turn it to their advantage.
When the financial crisis hit Dubai, Kashif Joosub was one of those people. While numerous businesses were closing their doors, unable to be sustained through the difficult economic downturn, he was able to launch Light House Studio – a purpose-built photography studio and production suite in Al Quoz.
“It was a really difficult time, but the positive thing about it was that people were willing to help,” he says.
“It was actually easier for me to start the business then. I went to the landlords and said ‘I’m setting up a new place - can you help me?’ They needed the work themselves - everybody needed business at that time - so they helped me out.
“The contractor who built the whole studio did me a big favour financially because they needed the work. Before the recession, all the costs would have been double and I would have had to pay it all straight up, but I didn’t have to at that time. It really started my career.”
Now, with two state-of-the-art studios catering for photography and video, equipment rental, and a series of talks, courses and workshops, Light House Studio has established itself as as a creative hub.
Launched in 2010, the studio offers a range of photography, including event, commercial, advertorial, fashion, wedding, corporate, and family portraits, as well as being home to pre and post production capabilities, and a whole host of other services.
Not bad for a man who arrived in Dubai trying to make it as a computer engineer. And even better for a man who didn’t take up photography as a serious concern until relatively recently.
Joosub says: “I studied computer engineering in South Africa and moved to Dubai after that, ten years ago when I was 21 years old. I was looking for a job in that field, but it was very difficult at that time. I had no experience and I had just finished my studies.
“So I went to the American University of Sharjah to study business, and while I was there I joined the photography club.”
His interest in photography developed further during his time at the university, learning the technicalities, undertaking online courses, attending workshops, and teaching himself various disciplines.
And then paid work started to come in.
“Friends started to ask me to do photography for them - weddings as so on,” explains Joosub.
“From there it grew from a hobby to freelance jobs.
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