Energie Entertainment Restructures For Growth

As the company continues to expand rapidly, Energie Entertainment’s Founder and CEO, Tyler Davis Smith, unveils details of a new structure, a key appointment and a transformational new premises…

In less than three years since the company was launched, Energie Entertainment has gone from being the “COVID baby” of Founder and CEO Tyler Davis Smith, to a mainstay of the UAE’s live events industry. “We’re certainly not a baby anymore,” Davis Smith told TPMEA. “We always knew that we were going to do well during Expo 2020, but it’s what has happened after that, which has proved that we’re here for the long haul. We have quadrupled in size since July last year and there are big plans on the horizon.”

Following a “massive” Q4 of last year, which saw Energie deliver numerous major projects – including roaming entertainment and live shows in Al Wasl Plaza at Expo City, a large corporate show at the Louvre Abu Dhabi, featuring international choreographer Sadeck Waff and site-wide entertainment for multiple clients across the three-day weekend of the Dubai Rugby 7s – the company is now undergoing a restructure to allow for continued growth. “The extremely strong growth we’ve experienced over the past year just highlights the need for some tweaks to our organisation to ensure that as we continue to expand, our high standards are maintained,” Davis Smith explained.

“When we entered the market, we wanted to be all things to all people and perhaps our offering was a little bit too wide,” he conceded. “Now we’re well established, it’s the ideal time to look to the future and put a clear plan in place that will allow us to continue to grow.”

The restructure sees Energie split into three departments: Special Projects, which covers large-scale productions or lengthy entertainment projects; Talent Booking, with a wide range of artists from singing guitarists, to MCs and roaming entertainers all on the books; and Show Control, for show calling and stage management requirements.

A key element of the restructure is the appointment of Operations Manager, Jo McCullough. “We’ve brought Jo onboard to support me in the day-to-day running on the business and also to help with the expansion of the company,” said Davis Smith. We needed a senior member of the team to be that first port of call if I’m not available, and her being here will allow me to spend more time focusing on the Special Projects side of the business.”

McCullough added: “I’m delighted to have joined the company. When I met Tyler at the end of August last year, I couldn’t believe what the company had done in such a short space of time – and even between now and then, the company has grown even more. I want Energie to be the preferred supplier and the first name to come out of people’s mouths when they’re looking for that turnkey solution for a large-scale event.”

While McCullough was known to Davis Smith after spending the past nine years living in the region, working on a multitude of events in both the UK and the Middle East, she was still subject to a stringent recruitment process – including a round of questions from the whole Energie team – to ensure that she’d be the right fit.

“It gave the team and Jo a chance to see how everyone would fit in and work together. It was so important to make sure that the team was just as happy as me,” Davis Smith reflected. “We needed someone not only with operational nous but also the knowledge of the artistic and creative sides and what is required to make that a success – and in Jo, we’ve found the full package.”

The restructure isn’t the only change going on behind the scenes at Energie, as the company is also in the process of moving to a brand-new premises in what Davis Smith describes as “a dramatic expansion”. He stated: “It will be a combined office and storage space where we have everything under one roof, including an in-house tailoring and wardrobe facility, so we can make costumes on site. We also now own an increasing number of assets such as costumes and back of house furniture, so the new space will accommodate all of that as well as being large enough for us to continue to grow at the same rate for the next three to four years.”

The surge of interest in entertainment in Saudi Arabia hasn’t escaped the attention of Davis Smith and while he admits that so far Energie has “only dipped our toes in the water” of the Saudi market, thanks to the restructure, he is now confident in the company’s ability to grow into the Kingdom in a significant way. “We’ve done well in the UAE and haven’t needed to go after the Saudi market too much so far, but there are so many opportunities there – especially when it comes to the large-scale event and ceremony market – that it will undoubtedly be a focus for us now that we have the capacity to service it,” he stated.

While it seems that a bright future is well and truly on its way, the CEO and Founder sounded a note of caution, citing the importance of building gradually. “We can’t make too many changes all at the same time; we need to do it at the right pace and not get carried away,” he said, glancing over to McCullough who, it seems, has the unenviable task of reining in Davis Smith when required. “We will continue to do things at the right pace,” she interjected. “I will keep an eye on the operational side of things and help ensure that we don’t sacrifice the ethos that has got the company to where it is today.”

“Everything we’re doing is about allowing us to grow while making sure that we can uphold high standards we have set so far,” Davis Smith concluded. “We’ve always punched above our weight since we started, and we will continue to do that until we get to the weight where I’m happy – and that’s certainly not yet. Our little baby is turning into a teenager, and we can’t wait to see the kind of adult it grows into.”

Photos: Energie Entertainment