Jai Manish Sharma, Executive Director, Expocentre Noida, is a graduate from King’s College London. He has been a part and keen observer of the exhibition and event industry since an early age. Hailing from one of the oldest families pioneering in the exhibition industry in the private sector, perhaps, he is the youngest entrepreneur in the venue management industry in the private sector, perhaps, globally. Being trained in the exhibition industry, working in the family business, he has taken keen interest in every aspect of the job, at all levels. Manish follows the saying “Client retention is the best measure of quality and services”, and boasts of retaining over 90% of it’s clientele with repetitive business, by providing a professional environment, flexibility, full support and transparency, to ensure minimum stress to all its clients
Q: What is the USP of Expocentre Noida that sets it apart?
A: Expocentre Noida sets itself apart from other venues in a lot of ways. To name a few, it could be the location, flexibility, prices, infrastructure, ease of planning and organizing the event, facilities, services, single window system, etc etc. However, if Expocentre Noida had to identify one USP, we would like to believe it is our support, professionalism and transparency that really set us apart from the other venue providers. Considering the varied range of activities we cater to, every sector identifies a different USP for the Multi-Utility centre, which in itself could be seen as the biggest USP. For instance, corporates appreciate our single point of contact and provider system meeting their end-to-end needs, while Exhibition organizers appreciate the ability to use such a large space as a single hall, while research companies prefer our ability to provide them complete confidentiality and secrecy
Q: What are the unique things provided to its clients not found at any other venue, which give it an edge over other venues?
A: In terms of facilities, we provide underground car parking which is a must for a city like Delhi, not provided by any other venue. In terms of options, we provide the organizer with any option tailor made to his needs, for instance, charges are based on the space utilized by them, irrespective of the remaining dead space in the hall. But most of all, the unique thing Expocentre provides to its clients is the “comfort and peace of mind”. As a Convention venue, the scope of work can be very limited, but this aspect, we understand, might be one of the most important aspect for an event. Comfort, can be in many ways, be it prices, understanding their requirements, timely deliveries, additional time, commitment, ease of booking, theme protection, freedom and flexibility to operate, transparency, so on and so forth. All these factors have helped us get an edge over other venues.
Q: What has been Expocentre Noida’s pace of growth so far?
A: The pace of growth for Expocentre Noida has not been as we would have liked it to be. But we have been receiving excellent reviews and support from all the industries that we involve ourselves with. Year on year, we have been doing bigger events, better events, new themes, new clients, new activities, which has helped Expocentre grow in popularity and experience. One of the major challenges that we have faced is the difficulty in bringing people to Noida. Even though they are not satisfied with the current options in Delhi and their management and operations, they are still averse to the idea of change, even though Noida is Delhi NCR and we are approx. 15 mins away from ITPO, on the National Highway. Also, with few events not getting the best exposure at other venues in Noida and surrounding areas, maybe due to the far away location, has had a small impact on events coming to Noida, as well. Fortunately, all events, B2B as well as B2C at Expocentre Noida, have received excellent visitorship and success, which further convinces organizers trust in Expocentre and Noida, and attracts more organizers to shift their events here. However, the pace has been slow but steady, but our long term aim is clear and well achievable.
Q: What has been your strategy or mantra for its rising popularity?
A: The strategy is simple. “Do as many events as possible”. We are confident of our services, facilities, infrastructure, and the venue overall. In such a case, the only next step remains to bring in as many people and events as possible. Every event with a footfall of 100 we do, we hope to raise atleast 5 inquiries, and subsequently, convert as many as possible from thereon. Once an event is confirmed, we are confident that every client, visitor, will have the experience that will want them to come back to Expocentre for their any event requirement. We have realized that the best form of promotion for any venue can be through events and word of mouth. The MICE industry and major players in the industry being so limited and closely linked, word of mouth plays a very important role in imaging yourself in the minds of the entire industry.
As I said, there is no greater measure of success, quality and credibility, than Client retention. If a client comes back regularly, everytime, for small, big, any type of event, even if he is getting other more feasible options, but he comes back to you, it speaks volumes of your work and experience, not only to the client himself but other industry watchers, visitors, client’s competitors, etc etc.
Q: What are the new avenues that you have opened up recently?
A: We have evolved as a preferred venue for many new interesting topics that initially, even we were unaware we could capture. For instance, reality show auditions – given the huge space we offer, closed complex, easy accessibility, close proximity, we are used as the audition venue for almost all major big reality shows of the country on Sony, Zee Tv, Star Plus, etc. etc Another would be car research activities – we provide the space, freedom, confidentiality and extended secrecy to ensure the vehicle manufacturer has peace of mind.
We have started arranging catering which has proven very successful, as we are able to provide the best quality service that our clients deserve. Given our excellent location, we are also planning on developing sites for promotion on temporary basis, such as hoardings, etc. Many more ideas are being developed and toyed with, at the moment.
Q: How do you incorporate the values and culture gained from your grandfather, Late Dr. Vishwanath at Expocentre Noida?
A: Dr. Vishwanath was the pioneer of the Exhibition industry in India and it is not only me, but many in this industry who have learnt from him. His values, lessons and guidance will always lead us in the right path. He always said “People are your biggest assets” and “Always put yourself in the other person’s shoes to help him better and deliver”. His values have taught us to keep a very client oriented approach in our dealings, with attention to minutest of details. He taught us to simplify our work as much as possible and learn from our previous achievements as well as mistakes, and how to do our best things, more efficiently and effectively.
Q: What is your vision for Expocentre Noida going forward?
A: More than a vision, it’s a dream. For the Convention Centre, to be the most sought after Venue in the country, and to receive the recognition it deserves. The Expocentre should reach its full potential. We are in the right direction and are confident we will reach there soon.