HomeBusinessBookMyShow: From Drunk Message to Dominating India's Entertainment Ticketing Industry

BookMyShow: From Drunk Message to Dominating India’s Entertainment Ticketing Industry

“It is all about going out and trying. But don’t follow the herd. You have got to be very clear why your idea or you as a person will succeed in this environment. How disruptive your technology is.”

In an unexpected turn of events, Ashish Hemrajani revolutionized the ticketing industry by introducing BookMyShow, a platform allowing users to book movie, cricket match, and concert tickets online, eliminating the need to endure long lines. This remarkable innovation had an unlikely beginning—a drunk message. Hemrajani’s journey to success took an intriguing and unconventional path.

In a recent interview, Ashish Hemrajani, co-founder and CEO of BookMyShow, revealed that he shared his business idea with his boss through a drunk text message back in 1999. Surprisingly, his boss responded with full support, saying, “No problem. Go for it.” Hemrajani’s journey to founding the successful platform began with this unconventional exchange.

Ashish Hemrajani’s background

Ashish established the parent company, Bigtree Entertainment, in 1999. Hemrajani, a Sydenham MBA Marketing graduate, transitioned from roles in Account Management and Client Management at J. Walter Thompson, an advertising firm, to found and lead BookMyShow as its CEO, as reported by StartupTalkey.

The origin of the name

Before becoming BookMyShow, the ticketing giant originally started as ‘Go For Ticketing,’ later transitioning to ‘India Ticketing’ in 2002. In 2007, the company held a name-suggestions contest for its staff, during which an intern proposed the name ‘BookMyShow.’ This name change aligned with the company’s vision and objectives.

About the company

Launched in 2007 and operated by Big Tree Entertainment Pvt. Ltd., BookMyShow is a leading destination for entertainment in India. With a presence in over 650 towns and cities, the platform caters to millions of customers, offering a wide range of entertainment options. Over the years, it has transformed from an online film ticketing platform to a comprehensive solution for managing live entertainment events, including concerts, sports, and more, maintaining the highest standards globally.

The founders of BookMyShow are Ashish Hemrajani, Parikshit Dar, and Rajesh Balpande. They are alumni of Sydenham Institute of Management, Mumbai University. Ashish Hemrajani currently serves as the CEO of BookMyShow. 

Hemrajani, with a background in advertising and marketing, played a pivotal role in the company’s inception, evolving from providing back-end ticketing services to launching BookMyShow as multiplexes and digital payment methods gained popularity. 

Rajesh Balpande, who transitioned from an investment banking role, is recognized as the Co-founder of BookMyShow and the Founder of Bigtree Entertainment. 

Parikshit Dar, another Co-founder, contributed significantly to the company’s technological aspects, playing a key role in designing and developing the website and ticketing portal, along with back-end technology support.

The online ticketing sector

The Indian online ticketing market, as per a RedSeer report, has reported a quarterly revenue of $28 million, with 50% of the industry’s earnings attributed to movies, followed by events. In 2017, the online ticketing sector, encompassing sports, concerts, and live entertainment, generated nearly $330 million. Notably, the online ticketing industry is expected to witness a 20% CAGR by 2020, and within a decade of its establishment, BookMyShow has achieved a 40% CAGR in revenue, securing a substantial 90% market share.

Competitors in the market

BookMyShow faces competition from local players like Explara, TicketGenie, Kyazoonga, IndianStage, BookMyEvent, MeraEvents, Asklaila, and TicketCountes, though it enjoys an early mover advantage. However, the platform is currently contending with Paytm’s discounts and cashback offers on movie tickets. According to a Kalagato report, despite competition, BookMyShow maintains a dominant 78% market share in the online movie ticketing sector.

Achievements so far

BookMyShow has achieved a commanding position in the online ticket booking industry, boasting over 50 million app downloads and consistently selling more than 15 million tickets each month. 

The platform records an impressive 2 billion annual page views and serves a vast customer base of over 30 million users across 650+ towns and cities, covering 4500+ screens. The company has attracted substantial funding from renowned investors like Stripes Group, Network 18, Accel Partners, and SAIF Partners. 

Additionally, BookMyShow has secured exclusive partnerships with major sports teams, such as IPL franchises Mumbai Indians, Kings XI Punjab, Delhi Daredevils, Pune Warriors, and Rajasthan Royals, and became the exclusive ticketing partner for the Formula 1 race in India. The company’s remarkable growth is reflected in its increasing revenues, which have surged from INR 391 crore in FY2018 to INR 563 crore in FY20.

Snigdha Basu
Snigdha Basu
A multifaceted writer, Snigdha Basu is a freelancer and a columnist at Entrepreneurs Today. She also spearheads Chic Life Edition - her own Digital Magazine with sustainable fashion, beauty, and culture at its core. Reach out to Snigdha at [email protected] for inquiries.
- Advertisment -

Most Popular