March 1, 2022 | By Graeme Kemlo | Image: CEO of HeadBox Australia Ali Lord
Fortune favours the brave they say, and in the case of new event technology company HeadBox, the decision not to launch in Victoria last year proved correct.
Rather than trying to win business in a locked-down environment, CEO of HeadBox Australia Ali Lord chose to launch in Sydney first and says she has demonstrated cost savings of up to 20 per cent on annual event spends, or about eight hours per event.
Lord has spent her entire career in the events industry, the past six years in UK where she first came across HeadBox – then a five-person startup – when she was managing 200 events a year for international media agency Dentsu.
Today she launches HeadBox in Melbourne and says coming from a user perspective was an important part of her decision to become an entrepreneur and launch HeadBox Australia, which is still reliant on the UK technology.
“We launched in Australia in February 2021 and some might see that as a bit of a bizarre time to launch, but we were actually provided with a lot of good opportunity…very minimal restrictions in Sydney and a perfect opportunity to support venues and event organisers on the corporate side,” says Lord.
Later last year HeadBox opened to Brisbane and Perth, both relatively untouched by COVID through 2021.
With a 13,000 strong database of event venues and the ability to view a 3D virtual site visit, HeadBox also has an in-house national event planning team.
“We work with clients to help plan the event, do the heavy lifting and be the creative solution,” says Lord.
Despite plans to launch in Melbourne in mid-2021, Lord says today’s launch “is proving a really pivotal time, a lot of large companies are returning to the CBD, and there’s a lot of momentum to deliver safe events”.
Lord says HeadBox is currently recruiting staff and has received many applications from people who had left jobs in different parts of the events industry
The platform can be used to organise everything from a birthday party to a major corporate event, but its main aim is to “partner with large organisations to assist them in delivering their annual program of events…it could be an exclusive executive dinner, or a firm-wide offsite like we’re working on for 600 people to a destination,” Lord says.
HeadBox is currently being used in Tasmania to facilitate an 800-person meeting in Hobart spread across nine hotels. It has offices in Sydney, Brisbane and Melbourne and plans to launch shortly in Adelaide and Canberra.