Then & Now: 10 Years of Sunburn with Karan Singh, CEO

Entertainment | March 14, 2016 | Interview

Sunburn Percept Live

2016 marks the 10th edition of #Sunburn.  

Started in 2007, as a 3-day music fiesta, #Sunburn is an amalgamation of music, entertainment, experiences, celebration and lifestyle that has seeded music tourism in India starting with Goa.  The music property has enthralled thousands of fans by presenting the most iconic DJs and artists on a parallel platform, including the likes of Swedish House Mafia, Tiesto, Avicii, Hardwell, Deadmau5, Armin van Buuren, David Guetta, Afrojack and Nicky Romero.

As per IMS APAC Business Report 2014, Sunburn Goa is ranked as big as Tomorrowland and Ultra Miami Festival. The property has also extended its presence into cities like Mumbai, Delhi, Bengaluru and Chennai with formats like arena gigs, club gigs, campus gigs, and the newest is ‘Sunburn Reload’ that is specially designed and customized to cater to as many dance music fans, giving them a piece of #Sunburn in their very own town.

EVENTFAQS spoke to Karan Singh, CEO of Sunburn on the stellar evolution of the IP in terms of lineup, artists, sponsors, etc. Edited excerpts are mentioned below:

 

How has Sunburn evolved in the last 10 years?

Sunburn introduced the concept of ‘Dance Music’ to India and we are a brand that has been given birth locally, and we have now gone global. A true global brand always happens when you foremost follow the mantra of ‘for the fans, by the fans, of the fans’! Dance Music is inclusive without barriers and it reaches out to all. It makes absolute sense for India to adopt it and participate. We believe why it has become so popular is because it’s very uncomplicated… After all, what can be simpler than ‘live love dance’! 

Sunburn started as one small event in 2007 on the beaches of Goa and it has grown phenomenally year-on-year because of the excellence that we strive for in all the areas. But it’s also because we speak to our fans, we stay in touch with them trying to figure out what they want, cutting across the age and the language barriers uniting people across cities and countries, reaching out to create a social platform for people to interact on.

Apart from the main festival, we have sub-brands and product lines as Arenas, Reloads, Campus and Club Events. Tier II in the Indian market has been exploding and we have been now focussing on Tier II and III markets to lead the brand journey. This helps us in growing the audience base and the dance music culture in the country, as well. We have witnessed 100% growth YOY in digital audience and we today stand at 1.7 million on Facebook, Google plus is at 1.1 million, Instagram followers are 163k, Twitter is 341k followers, our YouTube channel has 8 million plus video views and 62k subscribers. Even our on ground attendance numbers have seen 40% growth from season 8 to season 9.

Can you take us through the IP, specifically in terms of association with sponsors, marketing driven initiatives outlined by Percept Live?

Since IPs are experiential in nature, a lot depends on the on ground and digital database integration for the Sponsors. We have been working with the best of the brands, whether it’s been Hero in the past, as the principal sponsor or Renault and Gionee in season 9. The season 9 saw sponsor integration of more than 20 brands  with every brand integrating a unique concept - including Renault, Gionee (co-presenters)  Kingfisher, Smirnoff, Quikr Cars (in partnership with), FBB, Ola, Sky Bags, Airtel, Gillette, Spice Jet, Rayban (in association with), Sky Scanner, Stayzilla, 7Up, Ola Money, Instagram, Tinder, ITC, Dominos.

Read: #SponsorshipMarketing: 15 Brands in Action at Sunburn Goa 2015

Do you have any further plans to take the property to international markets?

Sunburn is listed as one of the top 3 music festivals globally. We also enjoy great global fan following and global market equity. We have already done shows in Dubai, Colombo and Oman and tasted great success with them and will continue to do so. We are already exploring other markets with International partners and will be focussing on Eastern Europe and South East Asia.

What are the evolving markets in India?

Entire country is lapping up EDM music, as it is music without any boundaries. It is inclusive and unites all. Having said that we have been surprised by the response that we have received from the tier II towns and the ever growing adoration and need of good music, good experiences and good artists. To name a few, Sunburn has stormed with the dance music culture across cities like Raipur, Trivandrum, Kochi, Indore, Bhopal, Jaipur, Kanpur, Lucknow, Dehradun, Pilani, etc...Live Love Dance!


This year, Sunburn is expected to launch a Sunburn Flag that will be used in the coming seasons *(flag can be an existing pattern or fan crowding), along with a Sunburn Loyalty Reward Program.

EVENTFAQS spoke to Karan Singh, CEO of Sunburn on the stellar evolution of the IP in terms of lineup, artists, sponsors, etc. Edited excerpts are mentioned below:

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