I am passionate to transform entertainment landscape: Priyanka Jain, Snow World Entertainment

With Priyanka Jain’s visionary leadership, Snow World Entertainment has risen to a commanding position, boasting an estimated valuation of approximately Rs 2000 crores

Priyanka Jain of Snow World Entertainment on women's day

In an industry traditionally dominated by men, Priyanka Jain’s ascent to a leadership position is a testament to the rising influence of women in the hospitality and entertainment sector. She is the Founder & Director of Snow World Entertainment, an industry disruptor that has boldly redefined the landscape of this sector. Her entrepreneurial journey is not just about business success but also about breaking barriers and empowering women in traditionally male-dominated industries. 

In celebration of International Women’s Day, SME Futures had a one-on-one with this dynamic businesswoman.  

Edited excerpts: 

Please tell us about your entrepreneurial journey. 

As a child, I was always into drawing and art. I completed my degree in Information Technology and garnered placement opportunities at a top IT firm. However, driven by my passion for the entertainment industry, I took the decision to lead our family business, creating a world-class entertainment ecosystem. 

Leveraging my strong business acumen and entrepreneurial skills, I focused on customer experience, marketing, R&D, and business development, culminating in the establishment of Snow World, our first entertainment concept, under the banner of Snow World Entertainment (formerly known as Chiliad Procons) Group. The success of Snow World prompted the launch of our flagship concept, Ski India, introducing indoor skiing for the first time in the country. 

Additionally, I worked with Snow World Entertainment, a family-owned International Property Advisory Company, leading real estate development for major FDIs in India. This included collaborations with companies such as Keppel Land-Singapore, Ascendas-Singapore, Damac Properties-UAE, and Royal Indian Raj International Corporation-Canada. Further, I was entrusted with business development operations by Royal Indian Raj International Corporation, Vancouver, Canada, and its Indian subsidiary Royal India Raj (India) Enterprises Private Limited, gaining valuable insights into branding & marketing under their guidance. 

Throughout my journey, I have successfully spearheaded ventures in the restaurant, hospitality, and entertainment sectors, aiming to introduce unique and innovative concepts to the Indian market. 

My decision to venture into this industry was fuelled by the realisation of a vacuum in the entertainment landscape of India, hitherto characterised by traditional forms of entertainment. This led me to seize the opportunity to introduce new and diverse entertainment concepts that align with the evolving tastes and preferences of the Indian audience. 

I strongly believe in the motto: ‘What we hope to do with ease, we must first learn to do with passion and hard work.’ 

What inspired you to foray into your own business, what’s your working style? 

I have always had a strong inclination for entrepreneurship. From an early age, I possessed an innate drive to create and innovate. This drive, coupled with a passion for the hospitality and entertainment industry, led me to pursue a career as an entrepreneur in this field.  

My working style can be described as future-forward and visionary. I have a deep passion for transforming the entertainment landscape and seizing untapped opportunities. I am constantly looking ahead, anticipating trends, and identifying ways to revolutionise the industry. My approach is characterised by a relentless pursuit of excellence, creativity, and innovation.  

Sustainability and creating unforgettable experiences are at the core of my work, as I strive to enhance the lives of people and add a new dimension to Indian amusement. I am driven by a passion for innovation and a desire to make a lasting impact on the hospitality and entertainment industry. 

As a female leader in the entertainment and hospitality sector, how do you view the role of women in shaping this industry? 

As a woman, you are sometimes overlooked, but it is through hard work and dedication that others see the results and begin to believe you. 

In an industry traditionally dominated by men, I have had my fair share of playing multifaceted roles, from crafting concepts to overseeing operations and managing staff, standing as a powerful example of women making a significant impact in the industry. I’m actively continuing to reshape the industry’s landscape, inspiring and leading the way for future generations of women in the world of hospitality and entertainment. 

However, there are some remaining hurdles for female entrepreneurs in our industry. These can be varied, including societal expectations, limited access to capital and support, a lack of business networks, confidence barriers, difficulties in balancing personal and professional lives, and obstacles in building market access. Despite these hurdles, their resilience will fuel our progress towards a more inclusive entrepreneurial landscape. 

Can you share some insights into how you’ve navigated challenges unique to being a woman leader in a male-dominated industry? 

As it’s a family business, my brother and I have been actively involved since day one. Our roles were initially defined by department, but due to our differing personalities, our communication styles often vary greatly. While our intentions are always good, poor communication and unfounded assumptions can lead to conflicts and disagreements. 

One aspect of family conflict that isn’t often discussed is the tension between siblings. In a family business, it’s highly probable that you’ll find yourself working alongside a sibling in various capacities, whether on the frontline or in the boardroom, making important family business decisions in leadership roles. How do you maintain harmony during challenging discussions or tough times, while still coming together for family gatherings? We are all unique individuals with distinct skills, strengths, visions, dreams, and family experiences. I’ve witnessed many cases of siblings successfully working together and running businesses, but it truly requires a lot of effort. I’ve learned the importance of being assertive, independent, hardworking, sincere, dedicated, and emotionally intelligent. And above all, patience is crucial for moving forward in life. 

Also Read: How Dishi Somani started her entrepreneurial journey with just Rs 5000

What was the watershed moment in your entrepreneurial journey? 

Launching the largest ski park in Noida was one such moment.  

When we launched the park with a carpet spanning 100,000 sq. ft. at DLF Mall of India in Noida, we had to run seven sessions per day, each lasting 1 hour and 30 minutes, due to the massive footfall. The park had the capacity to entertain 500 guests per session. However, the cost of maintaining such a large space, keep the temperature at -10 degrees Celsius and the snow in place year-round was high, as was the cost of necessary equipment such as shoes, jackets, gloves, skis, skating shoes, tubes, sledges, etc.  

We realised that due to the lack of tourism in India, the local audience alone couldn’t sustain the space for an extended period. This was a stressful time, during which we decided to keep the place operational by removing the ski track and making the space smaller to operate without complications. The location was modified and quickly cleaned up. A new idea was immediately put into action: opening a luxury entertainment centre in the heart of Mumbai, at Worli-Atria mall. My ability to form strategic partnerships and seize opportunities, combined with my strong determination, energetic temperament, and passion, has helped me to overcome obstacles. 

Your commitment to ‘Make in India, make for the world’ has been central to your company’s success. How do you balance this global vision with the local nuances of the Indian market? 

As a forward-thinking woman entrepreneur representing India in the global and South Asian community, my company’s mission revolves around creating unforgettable experiences. Through the ‘Make in India, make for the world’ narrative, our vision is to become a globally recognised brand in entertainment and hospitality, enhancing people’s lives and adding a new dimension to Indian amusement. We prioritise customer satisfaction and consider ecological implications in all our endeavours. Serving as a catalyst for creativity and innovation in India, we emphasise critical sectors that address personal needs.  

Our operational philosophy is simple: if we create incredible experiences, develop influential attractions, and enjoy the process, we’re on the right track. With entertainment and hospitality as our primary focus, we have committed investments of around Rs 300 crores for 2023-24 and Rs 500 crores for 2024-2025, targeting revenues of Rs 500 crores and Rs 1000 crores, respectively. My aim is to establish our brand as a global name, transcending boundaries and inspiring people worldwide. 

What advice would you offer to women looking to make a mark in traditionally male-dominated industries like entertainment and hospitality? 

I have a few mottos to share-Using your own skill set and strength makes you learn real life skills. 

Assertiveness is essential because it shows the decisiveness of an individual.  

Don’t be afraid of asking for what you want.  

Find a mentor and cultivate friendships, giving way to collaborations, creativity, and flexibility.  

Learn how to handle a conflict.  

Never stop learning. 

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