In Summary
  • The boom has given tens of businesspersons that include photographers, beauticians, cake makers, flower vendors, tent and decor service providers, caterers and transport operators' massive business opportunities.
  • By the time there will be lull in the wedding industry, the service providers would have hundreds of dollars in their bank accounts.

NAIROBI,

Vehicles hoot incessantly as they zoom in and out of the city centre dropping and picking commuters. The hoots drown bird's chirps, but one can hear the tweets faintly from nearby trees.

It is about 6:10 a.m. local time.

The hoots and the chirps welcome residents in Kenya's capital Nairobi as the city slowly comes to life.

As residents flock into the central business district in droves, at a building along Kimathi Street, a group of young men and women are busy preparing for what would be a long day.

They share video and still photo cameras and attendant equipment, each ensuring the gadgets are working before they leave to cover weddings.

This particular Saturday is one of their busiest days as they have four weddings to cover all in one day.

Each wedding is covered by four people, two who take photos and two video. "The four divide themselves into two units. Two people, a photographer and videographer, go to the bride and the other team goes to the groom," explained Nelson Otieno, a team leader.

Soon, after ascertaining that each group has all the necessary equipment, the team leaves for the assignments. They will later meet in the evening, at about 7 p.m., to review their work and how the day turned out.

BOOMING BUSINESS

The group is among businesspersons in the capital, who are currently reaping huge from a boom in Kenya's wedding industry.

It is the wedding peak season in the East African nation, with hundreds of couples tying the knot.

The boom has given tens of businesspersons that include photographers, beauticians, cake makers, flower vendors, tent and decor service providers, caterers and transport operators' massive business opportunities. "We must ensure that we get as much business as possible before it hits December since in January, things will slow down," said beautician Nancy Karimi.

The makeup artist's work involves ensuring the bride and her team are looking sharp for the occasion. "Most of the time I do not work with the groom, perhaps we ignore them but the feeling usually is that they do not need makeup," she observed.

On the material day, Karimi usually heads to the house where the bride and her maids are.

"I do everything makeup to them. These include applying cutex on their finger and toe nails (sic). I also apply makeup on their faces to match with their attire," she said.

Her main focus, however, is usually the bride. "In fact if their budget is small, I usually work with the bride alone and the rest find someone else to apply makeup on them." Karimi usually charges between 18 U.S. dollars and 29 dollars per person.

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