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Hidden Gems: Meet Shab Azma of Arc Collective

Today we’d like to introduce you to Shab Azma.

Hi Shab, thanks for sharing your story with us. To start, maybe you can tell our readers some of your backstory.
After graduating college, I knew I wanted to work in the entertainment industry and got my start working at NBC and the later Universal, where I had worked in press, home video, music and consumer products. I got a great knowledge of these various departments and was able to understand the industry from the ground up. With a strong background in consumer products, I was able to understand IP and brand building and took that skill from licensing and merchandising films and tv properties to building brands for people. I left the studios to become the VP of licensing at The Firm, a premier talent management company that repped music artists and actors. We looked at our talent as brands which is what inspired me to later partner up with a more boutique company, like Flutie Entertainment back in 2010. The company specialized in representing celebrity experts. I was excited to help chefs and designers take their skills and turn them into brands the way Martha Stewart and Rachel Ray, had done so well. A year and a half ago, I started my own company with the intention to build a more diverse client base. We are a female-led company, representing experts in various areas of discipline including food, design, health/wellness, fitness, fashion, beauty and more. We have a lot of passion around what we do. We take a very holistic approach with our clients and strive to be strategic every step of the way. We are staunch advocates for our clients and work to build their businesses in all aspects from TV, Publishing, Strategic Partnerships and Licensing.

Can you talk to us a bit about the challenges and lessons you’ve learned along the way. Looking back would you say it’s been easy or smooth in retrospect?
Parting ways from my former business partner after ten years was difficult. But the pandemic helped me gain some clarity on what I wanted for myself and my future. I knew that I had specific intentions and goals for myself and that it was time to step into my power and create the change I wanted to see. Starting a business during a pandemic was definitely challenging. Just setting up the company was quite the process and not every client came with me when I started the new company. Now I see that it was absolutely necessary to have done some forced house cleaning in order to create the vision I had for my new company and am beyond grateful for it because it allowed us to have the opening and clearing to attract new clients who better fit the DNA of my new company. We are very discerning when it comes to signing new clients and not everyone is a fit or the timing may not be right. Our current roster is incredibly reflective of our mission.

Thanks for sharing that. So, maybe next you can tell us a bit more about your business?
We are a female-run and led company. We have a very diverse client roster and want to give voice to those that don’t have a microphone loud enough to make some real noise. Our clients are not influencers, they are experts with influence. Our clients have an incredible pedigree, many of whom are best-selling authors, James Beard Award winners or on top-rated television shows. I am most proud of my incredible team who work hard every day to ensure that we help make our clients’ everyday dreams come true. One of the shows we helped create and take to network, was just nominated for a Critics Choice Real TV Award this year so right now that is a big accomplishment for our company!

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Image Credits
Photography: Ari Michelson

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