For over 12 years, Brendo Festen and Robert Boevé have formed the perfect duo at the festival organization Vivre Productions in Rotterdam. A third partner, Mike Petri, has also joined the team. AXP Adviseurs, with the expert advice of Mario de Laat, is always ready to support them. The result? A series of festivals enjoyed by thousands, with AXP Adviseurs smoothly handling the administration and providing fiscal advice.
As owners of Vivre Productions, the team has organized seven festivals in recent years, including Culinesse, Opperdepop, RotterdamseKost, IDDF, and Twonder. They are also the lead organizers for the national celebration of Chinese New Year in Rotterdam, transforming from a small event into a spectacular show with fireworks and dragon dances, aiming to pass on the rich culture to the new generation.
Brendo explains, “The festival world can be quite hectic, and administration is the least enjoyable part for us as creatives. Fortunately, we have Mario and his team at AXP Adviseurs to take care of that aspect. He handles the administrative hassle, allowing us to focus on organizing our events and business.” AXP also ensures compliance with all fiscal laws and regulations.
Despite challenges, including unpredictable weather, they reflect on a successful summer with events like Culinesse and Opperdepop. Looking ahead, they have planned more events for the winter, including Chinese New Year and the Blue Winterfestival in February.
Brendo, Mike, and Robert are future-focused, aiming for stability by attracting a consistent number of visitors and reducing dependence on weather conditions. Their ultimate goal is to organize a major concert for a renowned band like Coldplay. Brendo humorously adds, “If we can book Coldplay, we’ll call it a day ;)”
Challenges, including the impact of the pandemic, required creativity. Events were canceled, leading to a loss of income. Brendo acknowledges the support from Mario at AXP Adviseurs, ensuring the right financial assistance and making informed decisions to navigate through the challenges.
Staff shortages during the pandemic also affected the festival industry, but Brendo, Mike, and Robert successfully attracted a new team. Brendo emphasizes the close collaboration with AXP Adviseurs and Vivre Productions, stating, “Mario from AXP Adviseurs is more than just a financial advisor for us. He is a valuable partner, always providing practical advice on various fronts. His financial and strategic insights help us make informed decisions and ensure the smooth operation of our festivals. He guided us in converting our foundation into a structured BV, a significant step forward facilitated by his advice, providing a solid foundation for further growth and stability in our organization.”