June ‘14
Insight Interview

June ‘14
Shery Elkelany
Shery Elkelany


She can convince you that she is only 16 and you'd totally believe it! For she is such a bubbly, outgoing, simple character, who knows how to create her own fun. Let me introduce to you, the hustler mind behind Scoop Empire and Ninteen84 young at heart, Sherry Elkilany!

What can you tell us about yourself?

I don't know where to even begin! If I were to introduce myself; I'm a managing Partner at both Nineteen84 Management & Scoop Empire. Grew up in the U.S. and moved to Egypt when I was approximately 13. Some call me a workaholic; I tend to define myself as a hustler. Spanning over 10 years in the event and marketing industry, I began my career in Egypt's burgeoning Sports Marketing industry, to quickly be recruited by the Middle East's largest Film Studio Rotana Studios to spearhead and manage their Marketing Department, before starting my own company Nineteen84 Luxury and Entertainment Management. Along the way, I built some of Egypt's most successful websites such as Cairozoom.com, leading up until Scoop Empire, a compilation of me and my 2 partners (Sabrina Khalil & Kareem El Nagdy's) brain child!

How was your beginning in the events and marketing business?

I started when I was 16 by literally throwing myself into the industry. My best friend Ashibah and myself started biding our school dances in Cairo American College. After finding myself in the music industry, I decided to throw events rather than be a part of them. I partnered with a friend, who at the time brought Sonique for the first to Egypt as well as Trevor Nelson. The rest is now history. As for my entrance into the marketing world, it sort of came hand in hand with events. In order to have successful events they had to be marketed properly. So it just became a natural art of my business life.

Tell me about your experience at Rotan studios. What did you learn there?

Prior to working at Rotana, I was working at a sports marketing company called Stryx, we were responsible for the launch of Hacienda Bay in Sahel, the Masters Cup in Palm Hills, Barcelona Football team friendly match and many more. Although I was definitely growing and learning at the time in Stryx, I was head hunted by Rotana studios to fill the position of marketing manager. At the time Waleed Bin Talal was putting a team together of seasoned professionals in the field, to turn Rotana into the regions biggest film's studio. He brought on the ex-president of Studio Canal France; that for me was my cue, to be able to work and learn from someone that has handled one of the biggest studios in the world.

When did you decide to start your own business?

I've always done things on the side regardless where I was working, so events, gigs; projects were always part of my routine. While working for Rotana, I had created Cairo Zoom and turned it into one of the most successful sites in Egypt at the time. As the revolution approached and film industry died, I decided that now would be a better time than any to take the risk and pursue my own career path.

What's the philosophy behind Scoop Empire and Nineteen84?

My partners and myself see each company as a project that we're always looking to better and expand on. The one thing with us when it comes to Nineteen84, with it's events and social media clients, as well as Scoop Empire is that we take risks, we're willing to do what everyone else is afraid of doing. Sometimes it's hard to convince clients or sponsors that our vision is worth following, but at the end of it all when it pays off there is such great satisfaction in your work speaking for itself.

Why 'Ninteen84'?

Long story short, when I was developing the company I wanted to name it after something I'd never regret, same philosophy I have with my tattoos, so I thought that if I play around with my birthdate I'd come up with something that stands out. I'm going to have to change the story soon as I get older ;)

What's the coolest thing about your job?

That it's ever changing, from the people you work with and meet, to the ideas and concepts you have to come up with for clients. There really is never a boring or dull moment. I'd die if I had a regular 9 to 5 job.

How can you describe your 10 years in the business?

It's been a roller coaster ride and one hell of a learning experience. Through taking risks and venturing to areas of business people were too scared to touch, we've been able to develop our line of business without having too worry too much about how cut throat the industry is. As Nineteen84 and Scoop Empire we just do us and through it we jump from success and even any failure and see them all as learning opportunities.

What's your secret recipe to success?

Never be cocky, till today every project that I take on or event I throw the little girl inside me is worried as if it's the first time. We work on each project and client as if it's the first time. It's when you're cocky that you start seeing through people's cracks. One piece of advice, always stay humble.

What are your upcoming projects?

We're moving onto bigger events and live artists. After the success of Tinie Tempah in Gouna, we have some interesting things up our sleeves that you'll most likely see by the summer inshallah.

The craziest thing I have ever done'¦I'll keep those memories to myself, but I can say that involved a crazy night out in Cannes with Kanye West, Pharrell, Jamie Foxx and Leonardo Di Caprio.

By Rania Ihab