MeraEvents Success Story: India's largest portal solely dedicated to Online Event promotions

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A lot of work goes behind organizing a successful event. Ideation of the event, putting up a solid organizing team, creating a budget and resorting to it, and deciding the venue are just some of the pain-points. Even after all these efforts, the success of the event comes down to the number of attendees. Promoting an event and enticing people to attend it is a crucial task. If you're not sure on how to promote your upcoming event or an attendee on the lookout for some interesting program, leverage the power of MeraEvents!

Launched in 2009, MeraEvents connects organizers, delegates and service providers across the country. It offers event organizers with numerous options like listing, promotions, online ticketing etc. The platform adds over 1000-1500 events per month across various categories. Headquartered in Hyderabad, MeraEvents today is one of the best online ticketing platforms in India.

  • Startup Name-MeraEvents
  • Headquarters-Hyderabad 
  • Founder-Chennapa Naidu Darapaneni
  • Sector-Online Ticketing/Event Promotion
  • Founded-2009
  • Parent Organization-Versant Online Solutions Pvt Ltd

MeraEvents - About

MeraEvents provides value addition to events being organized as it offers benefits such as listing, promotions, online ticketing etc. to the event organizers. MeraEvents' USP is that organizers can list their events for free. Moreover, they can choose from different paid promotional packages, and benefit from the lowest payment gateway solution for selling tickets, etc. In short, MeraEvents offers end-to-end event technology solutions to its customers.

MeraEvents Logo

MeraEvents is a one-stop platform for all kinds of events. It has events and functions listed across various categories and happening in different parts of India. Professional, entertainment, sports, training, spiritual, campus, and trade shows are just the tip of the iceberg when one considers the categories on the MeraEvents portal. This helps people fine tune their search and narrow down to their desired results. An average of 1000-1500 events are added on MeraEvents every month.

MeraEvents also offer services related to ticketing (both online and offline), registration counter management, and digital marketing.

MeraEvents offers the following solutions at present:

EasyTag: A cloud based check-in and badge printing solution.

Digibroc: An online platform for exhibiting and distributing brochures and catalogs. This platform helps exhibitors retrieve details of visitors who showed interest in the digital brochures and thereby follow up with them.  

MoozUp: It is a white labeling solution that lets event attendees and organizers connect and engage with each other—before, during, and after the event.

MeraEvents - Founders And Team

MeraEvents Founder Chennapa Naidu Darapaneni

Chennapa Naidu Darapaneni is the founder & CEO of MeraEvents. After his engineering from JNTU-Ananthapur, Mr. Naidu moved to the United States and started his entrepreneurial journey in 2000. After returning to India in 2007, the challenges he faced in scouting for events propelled him to start MeraEvents as a the answer to these problems. Through Chennapa's dedication and clarity of thought, MeraEvents quickly emerged as the one-stop-solution for the event industry.

Over the last few years, MeraEvents has grown its staff from 6 to more than 60, expecting to enlarge its team by more than 100 people by the end of this financial year.

MeraEvents - Market Details

According to reports, the global online event ticketing market size is expected to reach USD 67.99 billion by 2025. Again, a ReedSeer report published in 2018 stated that online ticketing market in India recorded a $28 million quarterly revenue.

"The market size for events ticketing in India is $1 billion, but only 10% of the players are using online ticketing platforms", says MeraEvents owner Chennapa Naidu Darapaneni. There is a lot of scope for businesses to grow if event organizers can realize the benefits of using an online platform.

MeraEvents - History And Ideation

It was the year 2000 when Chennapa Naidu Darapaneni was working in the US with an IT company. Unfortunately, he lost his job during the dotcom bust of 2000. Naidu was searching for jobs but could not find any, compelling him to try his hands on entrepreneurship and create jobs rather than seeking one. Naidu set up Versant Technologies in the United States in the same year.

Versant Technologies was an end-to-end system integration company that specialized in Oracle Retail and Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) Implementations. Today, Versant Technologies has a strong presence in North America and India. It was more of a B2B services company and Naidu wanted to do something in the B2C segment. He then started attending a lot of events and seminars to know and learn about the B2C industry.

It's well-said “What you seek is seeking you”. Naidu found it difficult to attend these events since there wasn’t much information available about them beforehand. Ticketing, badge printing, and meeting other attendees were other challenges. He then started doing research on these events, asking attendees how they got to know about the same. It turned out that attendees had limited means of finding out about an event beforehand—either through word of mouth or through scattered information on the net. There was a lack of a proper channel where anything and everything about organized events and programs could be known.

Having identified the gap, he started a portal in 2009 – an event listing, promotion and ticketing platform to connects organizers, delegates, and service providers in different places. The portal was tactically named ‘MeraEvent’ in order to foster the feeling of association with the event of one’s choice. In 2013, Versant Technologies was taken over by Aspire Systems and Naidu shifted his focus full-time to MeraEvents.

MeraEvents - Business Model

MeraEvent's business model is built on commission received from event deals.

MeraEvents started out as a pure event ticketing platform and charged commissions only on the tickets sold. Over the years, it emerged as an event ticketing technology solution provider managing ticket desks in addition to becoming an end-to-end event marketing company.

MeraEvents - Revenue Model

Event organizers can list their events on the platform for free and create a unique URL for the event. However, they need to pay 1.99% to payment gateways, and a 2% service charge on every ticket. They also have the option to sell directly from MeraEvents wherein the service charge goes up to 8%

MeraEvents - Startup Challenges

A year before Naidu actually rolled out the portal, he was marketing it actively. He even spoke about it at the events he attended. People appreciated his idea, giving positive response. This activity affirmed that the path he was going on was a viable one. Initial sales remained tepid on account of an immature market. Event organizers weren’t averse to publishing their events on the portal; they weren't fully inclined to own the process. Most of the times, they would fail to intimate MeraEvents about event changes which created problems in smooth execution. Many of the event organizers weren't very tech savvy, and the MeraEvents team would publish the events for them in the beginning. Thus, the onus on the team was high in the initial days.

On top of that, there were troubles with the payment gateways and their limited numbers. Transaction failure rates through gateways were high. Initially, the portal used the EBS payment gateway and one other. Today, multiple payment gateways like PayUMoney and Citrus, and wallets such as Freecharge, Oxigen, etc. are being used by MeraEvents. In short, initial market penetration was time and effort consuming.

MeraEvents - Competitors is currently one of India’s leading 360-degree event technology solutions provider. It competes with Explara and BookMyShow.

MeraEvents - Partnership And Tie-Ups

In 2015, MeraEvents announced its partnership with Percept Live Pvt. Ltd, a media and communications firm. The deal size is approximately $10 million worth of transactions on the company’s platform.

According to the partnership, MeraEvents will offer end-to-end event technology solutions, for managing the online and offline ticketing. Along with it, they will provide ground management of entry of attendees at upcoming events of Percept Live across India.

MeraEvents - Growth

MeraEvents has grown to 60 people working from Hyderabad, Mumbai, and Gurgaon. About 80% of its revenues comes from Mumbai, Delhi, Chennai, Pune, and the NCR. It sells around 1000-15000 tickets in a day on an average, translating to ticket sales of around INR 3-4 lakhs a day. MeraEvents is selling close to INR 1 Cr worth of tickets per month at the moment and expects this to grow in the coming years.

MeraEvents is witnessing more than 200% growth YOY with the addition of 1000+ new events every month. The company powered 10,000+ events during 2013-14.

MeraEvents - Future Plans

The company will use its funding to expanding its reach to other cities, accelerate product growth and innovation, and invest in additional sales and marketing resources.

MeraEvents - Founder's Advice

“Have a holistic plan and talk to someone who can give blatant opinions before you start implementing it. Be open and flexible and take a look at market demands while running the business”, says Chennapa.

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