Consumers are more careful with spending on entertainment shows as the novelty of international acts has “worn off”, according to the CEO of Abu Dhabi-owned events company Flash Entertainment.
Speaking to Arabian Business, John Lickrish said people are now “more selective” in terms of the shows they are willing to pay for due to global artists now regularly performing in the UAE.
“People are being a little bit more cautious on the money they’re spending. The novelty of having international acts has kind of worn off. In the beginning, it was just like anything that happened, you needed to go now. But now people are being more selective.
“They don’t feel like, ‘wow I missed this artist, it’s a huge social profile,’ [because] they know other artists that are similar will be coming through, or there might be other opportunities to see them down the line in another territory,” Lickrish said.
Flash Entertainment is the force behind the Mubadala World Tennis Championship and the Yasalam entertainment programme as part of the Formula One in Abu Dhabi. It has also hosted the FIFA Club World Cup in the UAE.
The firm has brought celebrities including The Rolling Stones, Paul McCartney, The Who, Rihanna, Andrea Bocelli, Coldplay, Christina Aguilera, George Michael, Alicia Keys, Shakira and more to the UAE.
Lickrish said the abundance of entertainment shows means Flash Entertainment must now carefully consider its pricing and the diversity of its content.
“That’s where disposal income has come into play just because of what’s happening in the region. People have more opportunities to go out and do different things. We have to be careful on how our price points are and how much content is coming through and also the diversity of that content; that it doesn’t just appeal to one particular demographic,” he said.
Lickrish said the company is also in talks with Dubai Expo 2020, which he called a “huge opportunity” for the events business.
“It’s absolutely a huge opportunity. We’ve had a few discussions like everyone else has in the events business. I think that they’re going to be needing the services of a lot of the big companies and obviously we’d like to take advantage and we’ve been speaking to different groups about the uniqueness that Flash will bring and our capabilities,” he said.For all the latest business news from the UAE and Gulf countries, follow us on Twitter and Linkedin, like us on Facebook and subscribe to our YouTube page, which is updated daily.
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