We had the good fortune of connecting with Vaspour Antanesian and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Vaspour, do you have a budget? how do you think about personal finances?
Since a young age, I was thought the importance of financial prudence and having a budget. However, I do not use a budget in the typical definition of the word. I have attempted it, but I find myself having to constantly adjust it which defeated its purpose. To me, budgeting has taken a different shape entirely. It’s binary, with only two categories, There are the non-negotiable expenses that come from my paycheck from the top and then there is everything else. For example, my mortgage payments, contributions to 401k, contributions to my Roth IRA, and my fixed monthly expenses come out the very first of the month, and I always have a clear understanding of what that number is going to be every month. I do not budget for anything else, AKA I try to spend as little as possible on all of those other things. Once you learn about compound interest, and how much every single dollar you don’t spend can improve your life style in the future, it becomes much easier to not waste money on things you do not need. Everything that’s not in my non-negotiable monthly expenses is on a need to basis, and I always try to extract the most amount of value for the decision. For example, lets say I need to buy a personal computer, I first determine exactly what features I need, do my research, find the right set of products, then scour the net for the best possible deal in that subset of products. I avoid shopping without a clear goal of what I am looking for first. The world out there has gotten really good at making you buy things you don’t need, with all the money and science dedicated to marketing! It’s also worth mentioning that it’s been much easier not spending money in bars or restaurants this past years since everything was closed because of COVID. Everyone does have a vice though, and for me that’s my baby Samoyed puppy. I can not stop spending on this guy! If you ‘ve ever met him, you’d know exactly why. Being mostly prudent and following some basic financial concepts when you invest can help you build financial independence rather quickly and be much more comfortable when it comes to making a life style improvement or expenditure. I think the bottom line comes down to these two two simple rules: don’t buy things unless you absolutely need them, delay your gratifications and invest your money instead
Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
I believe what sets our business apart is the quality of our work especially as it comes to its price point. The level of production we offer to our small business owner and retail clients are on par with large company production goals but on tenth of the budget or less! We’ve been able to accomplish that by owning all our equipments as opposed to renting them, and having film and editing crew that’s in house. We were further able to optimize our price points by having package deals to meet the ongoing needs of our clients in a cost affective manner. A majority of our clients are repeat business, and they are always trilled about their videos. That also hints at the biggest challenge our business faces. Although video production is not a new category by any means, providing studio quality production for small business and retail clients its scratching a completely new market approach. One that has a misconnection between the the prospective clients and the services being offered. Our biggest challenge, not unlike many other businesses, has been acquiring new clients. However, we have made some moves recently to help in that aspect that we are very optimistic about. Last month we had a job posting for account managers for Elit Productions, and we were truly overwhelmed by the shear volume of quality talent that applied to our position. We are currently in the final stages of selecting candidates from the pool of the interviewees, and we expect great things to come over the next quarter
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
The response to this question is really subject to whether we are talking during covid, or pre/post covid. Since alot of the places I would normally go are closed, I’ll focus on the stuff that’s actually available.
At the risk of stating the obvious, you cannot go wrong with a visit to Venice beach. I don’t think anywhere else is as quintessentially LA as Venice.
If one of my foodie friends comes over though, we are definitely having visit to Raffi’s place in Glendale, they serve THE best Persian cuisine in LA, coming from someone who lived in Iran for about half of their life, I can definitely vouche for Raffi’s Place
Another wonderful spot a little further south would be visit to Huntington beach. Great place to have a beach day AND night, since you can do bun fires. And if you are lucky, and plan earlier, you can catch a show at SeaLegs at the Beach, they had a candle light open air dinner with performance by Orchid Quartet just this past month.
If talking pre/post Covid a lot more options free up.
Spire 73 , on the rooftop of Intercontinental in DTLA was a favorite
Cana Rum Bar was also a weekend favorite when you felt like dancing and great drinks, and a lot less bougie than the intercontinental
Last but not least, you cannot visit LA and not get a day in at Disney Land, and/or Universal Studios
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I’d like to give a shoutout to Stella Balasanian from Stela B Coaching! https://www.stellabcoaching.com/meet-stella/
she has been a wonderful resource in helping our business expand its reach and she is overall just a wonderful and helpful person!
Personal photos or Elit Productions