| 29 Nov 2023
'Electric Daisy Carnival lost 50 pc footfalls due to demonetisation'
(image courtesy: Electric Daisy Carnival India)
(image courtesy: Electric Daisy Carnival India)

MUMBAI: The Indian government’s decision to ban the Rs. 500 and Rs. 1000 notes from general circulation in the market has had its own positive and negative effects. Among the several industries that faced direct or indirect consequences of the move is the live events industry that has suffered more than a few hiccups in the last one month.

The first Indian edition of one of the largest electronic dance music festivals in the world, Electric Daisy Carnival (EDC), held on 12 and 13 November in New Delhi’s Buddh Circuit, enjoyed a response of at least 25000 footfall during the two-day event. However, the founder of Only Much Louder (the agency that partnered with Insomniac for the execution of EDC) informed that the turnout could have been at least twice the official figures.

“The announcement happened on 8 November, just four days before the first day of EDC. In that short period of time, people had not exchanged their old notes. And at the box-office, we could not accept the cash (older notes) as a lot of attendees did not have their money converted,” Nair says. During the early hours on day 1 itself, at least a thousand fans, who turned up with the junked notes had to be turned away. Thankfully for the festival organisers, a huge number of attendees had bought the tickets online before the prime minister’s announcement on the night of 8 November, but certain sectors were exposed to the challenges that followed.

Nair says the impact reflected on the F&B sales. The country’s capital is a major on-ground sales market, and since people were getting their heads around demonetisation and finding the solutions for the same, OML and Insomniac had no other option but to continue with the execution of the festival with the original plan.

Only Much Louder recently concluded its seventh year of organising Bacardi NH7 Weekender in Pune with almost no major obstacle in dealing with the cash issues, thanks to the reliability and efficiency of digital transactions. However, a huge chunk of the events industry deals with cash. And although OML concluded the NH7 Weekender Pune edition with two ATMS at the venue, the lack of time and last minute arrangements worked as obstacles in setting up the machines at Buddh Circuit for EDC.

The first edition of Electric Daisy Carnival featured Nucleya, Alesso, Afrojack, Ferry Corsten, Anish Sood, Vini Vici and several other established electronic music producers from the country and beyond.