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  • Brian Lim
    Expanded Bio
    (2013)

    The gloving scene’s most important promoter, a pioneering glover himself, Brian Lim started EmazingLights three years ago, in July 2010, by selling gloving sets and LEDs out of the trunk of his car at a local Southern California In-n-Out Burger.  His second retail brand, iHeartRaves, which sells colorful dance apparel and accessories, followed soon after in October 2011.  Now, at the ripe age of 26, he runs “the world’s largest rave store” out of his 15,000-square-foot warehouse and headquarters in Anaheim, CA.  The business includes two EmazingLights-iHeartRaves retail stores in Southern California, a new Milpitas store in Northern California, plus the EmazingLights.com and iHeartRaves.com commerce sites.  Lim also just signed his first license deal for a Dallas, TX store.  All together, his business employs over 40 people and racks up over $5 million in annual sales of apparel, accessories and light show products for the Electronic Dance Music (EDM) scene.  With over 26,000,000 YouTube channel views and over a half million Facebook fans, the company’s trump card is its impressive ability to reach and resonate with young EDM audiences – a niche group that is incredibly difficult to reach through traditional marketing tactics.  Additionally, Lim organizes weekly, monthly and annual gloving events, including the International Gloving Championship (IGC), which draws thousands annually and has elevated the lightshow form to a legitimate art and sport.

    Lim was born in Los Angeles and currently lives in Brea, CA.  Growing up, funds in his family were tight; his parents escaped communism in China and they struggled to make ends meet in Southern California by operating a small donut shop.  Out of necessity, Lim learned at an early age how to fend for himself financially.  Luckily, he was naturally ambitious with a mind for business.

    Lim’s entrepreneurial spirit first emerged when he started to make and sell custom music CDs in middle school.  He also taught himself to build computers in the 10th grade, then went into business buying components and making custom systems for friends, while he was living for a period with his grandparents in Washington State.  A competitive Warcraft III gamer, top ranked in team play, Lim also started to teach formal gaming lessons while still in high school.  These accomplishments led to Lim winning the prestigious Horatio Alger Award, which honors achievement accomplished through hard work, self-reliance and perseverance over adversity.  The award garnered him a $10,000 scholarship and all-expense paid trip to Washington DC.

    Largely with the proceeds from his early entrepreneurial ventures and scholarships, Lim paid his own way through UCLA, without family support, graduating in 2009 with a BA in Economics.  At UCLA, he was a member of the business fraternity Delta Sigma Pi and continued to blossom as an entrepreneur (adding buying then reselling technology products online to his repertoire).   Also, during his first year in college, he worked for a legal services firm where he created and led a team of over 50 people.  This experience was crucial in Lim’s development, as it challenged him to manage a large team at a young age.

    After college, Lim landed a prestigious job with Deloitte Consulting, where he worked for two years.  He managed to pay off his education loans in his first year out of school and also started to build his own, completely self-funded, company, while still at Deloitte.  Lim didn’t quit his day job until he was able to establish a viable business model that could financially support him.  Around this time, his girlfriend introduced him to raves.  He quickly became passionate about the creative EDM scene and saw a market opportunity for light show products, at reasonable prices, with excellent customer service.

    Purchasing LED gloves was a “major pain” and Lim knew he could do better than the alternatives on the market at the time.  As a result, he started EmazingLights while still working at Deloitte.  After purchasing a couple thousand products, he began selling from the trunk of his car, as well as via Craigslist and eBay.  By July 2010, the growing gloving community started to converge at Lim’s weekly Friday Night Lights events, which were informally hosted in the parking lot of the local In-n-Out Burger.  As profits quickly rolled in, he opened his first retail location in West Covina in December of that same year.  Then, a year and a half into the venture, Lim had the capital and knowledge to create his own unique branded products.  His company now controls all elements of the supply chain and customer fulfillment.  From conceptualizing and planning, through product development, engineering and testing, all the way through to marketing, Lim and his team are continually breaking new ground in their field.

    Globally recognized, EmazingLights-iHeartRaves is now the largest dedicated company selling EDM products in the US.  The company pioneers gloving as a dynamic new art form/sport, similar to skateboarding, BMX and hip hop dance, with constant innovation in moves and product engineering. While the foundation of the company is built on excellent products and attentive customer service, Lim attributes much of EmazingLights-iHeartRaves’ success to social media – particularly Facebook and YouTube.  Lim and his energetic young staff, who all grew up with the internet, are experts at engaging EDM fans online with lively, fresh content that features not only the company’s colorful products in action, but also exciting competitive event coverage, and educational tutorials.  As a result of the company’s social media aptitude, it boasts some of the best stats in terms of fans, followers, and subscribers among EDM-related businesses after only three years in operation.  Lim’s businesses have over 550,000 fans on Facebook plus YouTube channels with over 50,000 subscribers and over 26 million views.  For reference, these numbers are even more impressive than comparable figures from Insomniac Events, the 20-year old US producer of large-scale electronic music events (such as Electric Daisy Carnival), which has nearly 218,000 Facebook fans, 45,000 YouTube subscribers and 22 million channel views.

    EmazingLights.com and iHeartRaves.com were both recently accepted into the prestigious Google Trusted Store Program.  While the three brick-and-mortar stores sell the EmazingLights and iHeartRaves product lines, those locations are primarily an avenue to build the community.  The stores function as a place for light show artists and fans to come together for weekly events with DJs and a great atmosphere.  By providing them with their own physical space to congregate, compete, play, and interact with each other, Lim has fostered the scene while positioning himself and his company as a leader in the industry.  His success relies on building a tribe and establishing a brand that resonates with the electronic music audience.

    Community service is important to Lim.  He supports community efforts through not only his own business, but also through nonprofit organizations.  Most notably, Lim is a founding member of the Electronic Music Alliance (EMA), a 501c3 nonprofit and a global alliance of dance music fans and artists uniting the electronic dance music community.

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    Brian Lim, EmazingLights Founder/CEO
    (Photo credit www.gregoriophoto.com)

    Lim also considers his business a family, fostering a close-knit sense of community among his team of passionate, hardworking employees.  Additionally, his two best friends work for EmazingLights, as do both of his parents and brother.  In summary, EmazingLights is a family company, built by a savvy young entrepreneur who overcame adversity, with a mind for business, a passion for electronic music, and a strong sense of community.  Lim is also incredibly ambitious.  His ultimate goal… become the Nike of EDM.

    Posted on August 14th, 2013 lynn-hasty No comments

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