Entertainment agency is spreading its wings after successful start in home city

An entertainment agency which is supplying everything from shot girls to fire eaters for Hull’s revitalised social scene, is spreading its wings after a successful start-up.

After drawing up plans in early 2020 to shake up the attractions in pubs and clubs across the region, the team behind Loco found themselves forced to delay when Covid struck.

When they did finally get up and running the landscape had changed, demand was booming and the sector’s needs were different as operators moved to make up for lost time. Now, two years after the launch, the Loco founders are adding impetus and excitement to venues across Yorkshire and Lincolnshire and targeting destinations further afield.

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“We came up with the concept before the pandemic but that stopped us in our tracks,” said Alex Fletcher, one of the trio who launched the vision early in 2020.

“We kept in touch, continued mapping out our plan, and then the time was right as the venues were looking to recover from their loss of earnings. By the time the restrictions were lifted people were fed up of it, they wanted to get out again and everywhere was really busy.”

Alex worked as a joiner making modular buildings and then joined the Land Registry before getting the chance to transfer his skills into entertainment, working at venues in Hull, including Atik, Pozition and Surf.

Jake Keegan spent seven years in Ibiza as a street promoter. Both Alex and Jake got to know Tom Bowden from his time running Surf and Atik in Hull, and the three joined forces officially in August 2021 to kickstart the new venture.

Loco Group founders Tom Bowden, Jake Keegan and Alex Fletcher.
Loco Group founders Tom Bowden, Jake Keegan and Alex Fletcher.

After initially working from home they moved to the The Deep Business Centre – just a short stroll from some of their key clients in Hull’s Fruit Market and Old Town. Loco also serves destinations in northern Lincolnshire and West Yorkshire.

Alex said: “It helps the venues build on what they sell in the bars. We also offer general marketing support including photography and videography to help them get traction on their social platforms.”

Growth has brought job creation, with a mix of self-employed and casual staff getting the opportunity to work in a fun environment and maybe embark on careers in the industry.

Jake said: “All three of us started at the bottom and made our way up. Tom gave me one of my first opportunities as a street promoter. We know each other’s strengths and we decided to pool our ability and experience. We are basically an agency which helps venues generate extra revenue from things that aren’t their normal areas of trading. The feedback from the venues is amazing.

“We have built up some really good relationships and we’re helping them attract more people by showing that Hull is still a great night out.”

Additional strands of the business include running special events for clients, with new ideas designed to attract more mature audiences.

Alex said: “We have added quite a bit of new business this year and we’re targeting some new areas, and the catalyst for that was moving into The Deep Business Centre. It’s been a lot easier to work as a team in a place which is very well organised and close to a lot of our venues.”

Freya Cross, head of business and corporate at The Deep, said: “We know from our own role in the business community and as a hospitality destination ourselves that people want something extra special from a night out and Loco are taking a really dynamic approach to that.

“They’ve played a big part in regenerating the night time economy here in Hull and across the region and we’re providing the space and other support in a location which is at the heart of their activities.”

Original artice – https://business-live.co.uk/all-about/yorkshire-humber

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