When large gatherings were shut down earlier this year, Tempe-based event production agency, Encore Creative, decided to make the best of the situation. With the idea of bringing a modern Ghostbuster approach to safety and sanitization in public areas or gatherings, CEO Stefanie Lerner founded SaniCrew. Here, Lerner discusses how SaniCrew hopes to bring peace of mind as reopening begins.
Tell us about SaniCrew and how the company came to be.
Encore Creative has been a leader in the live event industry in Arizona and around the country for nearly 40 years. At the onset of the Coronavirus pandemic, with live events no longer being viable, we were forced to eliminate most of our staff and contractors. After brainstorming with the remaining team members about how we could help in the era of COVID, Encore Creative launched a new endeavor which became known as Go Time Design, and it serves as the parent company of SaniCrew. SaniCrew was born in an effort to think about what we can put in place now to try and aid the return of live events. While we don’t know exactly when live events will return, we know there will be some anxiety and fear once they do. SaniCrew was created to help alleviate some of this fear and provide peace of mind. We used our theatrical background in our experiential event approach to introduce sanitation in a pleasant and playful way while being very equipped and effective at the same time.
What specific services do you provide?
At its simplest, SaniCrew is a specialized staffing service. We provide clients with a uniformed, masked, gloved, sanitizing system that can be offered human-to-human within the social distancing guidelines. However, it also comes with a smile and a heart since under the uniform is an energetic SaniCrew team member!
Post-pandemic, how do you think these services will come into play during events?
SaniCrew will be a vendor like any other (e.g. a caterer, florist, etc.) for an event. We hope that as people start gathering, the first thing on their mind will be guest safety, thus SaniCrew will play a vital role. Our goal is to see every gathering or convention staffed with SaniCrew at registration, up and down the aisles of a trade show, at coffee breaks between breakout sessions or even in front of concert venues, sporting events, and weddings to ensure safety and sanitization. We know people will gather again someday and the SaniCrew team is prepared to work at any type of gathering whether it’s personal or professional, social or corporate.
Tell us about your “Ghostbuster approach” to cleanliness?
Our modern-day Ghostbusters reference is really to bring our years of theatrical and experiential entertainment production into the sanitation market. The Ghostbuster reference is to add a little levity to something that is, in reality, quite serious. We designed the uniforms with our team of costumers under the direction of our creative director, down to the smile on the mask and the color of the uniform to hopefully make people feel happy and at ease when they see a SaniCrew approach them loaded with high-quality and locally-distilled, Blue Clover hand sanitizer.
What are your long-term goals for the company?
We want to aid in the recovery of the live events business by bringing comfort and sanitization to gatherings. We want to see SaniCrew in every corner of the United States for gatherings and events.