Shop Local: coffee with ESP’s Hayley Hinchliffe

Shop Local: coffee with ESP’s Hayley Hinchliffe

1.How many events does ESP co-ordinate a year?

About 100 a year and that’s been fairly consistent. But the styles of events have changed over the past 10 years.

2.How has the event landscape in Perth changed since your business started?

When I first started ESP 10 years ago there weren’t many event agencies around. Events were organised through PR or AV companies. Perth was very different to the rest of the world when it came to events but we’ve started to follow the east coast vibe where everyone is a specialist in their area so it’s less of a one-stop shop because people specialise. Perth has changed where councils etc are allowing pop ups, so there’s more of a variety of venues and it’s better for the people of Perth.

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3.What challenges have you encountered as a small business and how have you overcome them?

Price wars and there’s more competition but that does keep us honest. Retaining good talent is hard in this industry because it’s a physically hard job, so we do churn through people because it’s not for everyone. There’s very good operators in the industry who are inclusive and really positive but the formal training isn’t there. Pinterest and Instagram, and social media in general, has a lot to answer for. People see an image but don’t see the work that goes in behind the scenes to create it.

4.How do you support small business?

We use as many suppliers from WA as we can. Perth has amazing talent. With most of the contracts we get, there’s a buy local clause involved, so we source local produce and talent where we can.

5.What is your local coffee shop?

Fortysevenkirwanstreet, Floreat. I love it there because it’s a family-run business and the owners are the ones behind the coffee machine and I relate to that. I’m at gigs from start to finish.

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