On Tuesday afternoon, Lithuanian event organisers, event technical service companies, artist and band managers, arenas and concert halls, ticket distributors and other companies involved in event organisation convened their first joint meeting. More than fifty business leaders gathered in a specially organised video conference to join the Lithuanian business community in addressing the Government on the situation that has severely affected the events sector, which until recently was a source of public joy.
"The ban on mass events and on the operation and attendance of all arenas and concert halls in cities has deprived these institutions of the opportunity to carry out their activities and generate income. These bans not only cause huge losses for us, but also threaten the continuity of our operations. Even if the quarantine regime and emergency measures end, it is very likely that the activity of arenas and concert halls will be very minimal, as the possible threat of a new virus or a reoccurrence of the same virus will make people reluctant to buy tickets and attend mass events for some time, and for event organisers - to organise them," says Andrius Žiauberis, the head of the Siemens Arena, on the threat to the events sector.
In the face of the coronavirus crisis, the organisers of the events decided to set up an association during a meeting yesterday, and on the first day more than fifty companies from all over Lithuania expressed their willingness to join.
The following were elected as members of the Board: "Tomas Balčiūnas, Head of Eventum Group, Diana Bukantaitė - Kutkevičienė, Head of DOMINO Theatre, Artūras Butkevičius, Head of Tigris Concert Organisation, Simonas Čepėnas, Head of Rootslive, Agnė Grigaliūnienė, Head of Olive, Mindaugas Krasauskas, Head of Garso Fabrikas, Katerina Lapienė, Founder of Correctus, Audrius Mackevičius, Head of Propeler, Vaidotas Motuzas, Head of Videoprojektai LT, "Marijus Olekas, head of Lietuvis, Valdas Petreikis, head of Forse Event, organisers of the Midsummer Vilnius festival, Donatas Simonaitis, head of KOK, Mantas Vedrickas, head of event organisation representing Žalgiris, Andrius Žiauberis, head of Siemens Arena and Tiketa, head of the creative house ELITAZ, Gediminas Jaunius, head of the creative house Gediminas Jaunius, who has been elected chairman of the board of the association of event organisers.
"The events business community is going through its most difficult moment in the last 20 years. It is likely that more than one event service company will go bankrupt during this crisis. We decided to create an association with the aim of communicating more productively with the authorities to protect the rights of such companies, and to make the participants of this industry feel like full members of the Lithuanian economy, as the Chairman of the Board of the Bank of Lithuania has said - together this sector generates 2% of the GDP", - Gediminas Jaunius, one of the initiators of the idea and producer of the creative house ELITAZ, said about the creation of the association.
The event management industry brings together thousands of employees - the event management business includes not only companies providing direct organisation services, but also technical service companies with thousands of employees - sound, lighting, video, stage technology, as well as band and artist management companies, stage and set design companies, pavilion and event furniture rental companies, event caterers, ticket distributors, arenas, cultural centres, theatres, organisers of music festivals, concerts, sporting events, non-profit event organisers and similar related companies. Representatives of these companies yesterday launched the formal process of setting up an association and took the decision to approach the Government with concrete proposals on how to help workers in one of the most affected sectors and a request to do their utmost to try to save the most important jobs in this sector - thousands of jobs.
"Within the Association, we have decided to formally address the Government to ask for the help our sector needs right now. The events sector is at an absolute standstill, with a complete ban on our activities and no foreseeable income in the near future. Our priority is to preserve the jobs of those working in the sector, so we are asking for help from the state - only together can we overcome this difficult period", - Marijus Olekas, one of the initiators of the establishment of the association and the director of the event organisation company Lietuvis, identifies the main problem discussed during the meeting.
With thousands of jobs on the line and action needed, the newly-formed association has already started talks on cooperation with the neighbouring creative industries associations, who were guests at the meeting. The association, which brings together the event organisers' community, informs that it is open and invites new members from the event organisation and service sectors to join by contacting the following email address [email protected] or directly to the Chairman of the Board or any member of the Board of the Association of Event Organisers.
Media can contact us for comment:
Gediminas Jaunius, Chairman of the ROA Board
Tel: +37065969999 email: [email protected]
Laura Ignatovičiūtė, Assistant to the Chairman of the Board
Tel: +37067832477, email: [email protected]