By Kim Lyons
Susie Perelman had about 20 years of experience in the event planning industry. She took a couple of years off when her children were small, but in 2001 she was looking for a way to get back into it and still have nights and weekends with her family.
So she started Mosaic Inc., a linen rental company in the Strip District. She said she has grown the company twelvefold since then, with 10 employees, despite the ups and downs of the economy over the past several years.
“There is no balance, but I do find this is a way to stay with it because I love what I do,” said Ms. Perelman, who is seeking to grow the company through updating her website.
Her company’s services are used for weddings, banquets and company functions — both in Pittsburgh and nationwide. Mosaic provides tablecloths, napkins and aisle runners, along with other textiles. When it comes to events, she said, “Nothing else can get done until the linens are on the tables.”
Ms. Perelman has landed in an industry that has strong growth potential, according to the Labor Department’s Bureau of Labor Statistics, even though it might seem that event planning companies would struggle as people watch what they spend.
“People want to celebrate good times even during bad times,” she said. “We’re not recession-proof, but people find a way.”
The BLS analysis found employment of event planners is expected to grow 33 percent between 2012 and 2022, a much faster clip than the average occupation. “As globalization increases and businesses continue to recognize the value of professionally planned meetings, demand for meetings and events is projected to grow,” according to the labor bureau.
Planners who have clients in the health care industry are the best-positioned to ride out a downturn, the BLS research finds, because medical professionals have to attend meetings and conventions in order to fulfill continuing education requirements.