When David Isaacs
quit medical school after three years of study, it was a bold
The young student had realised medicine was not for him and,
with an entrepreneurial streak that dated back to his
childhood, he decided to pursue another direction.
Mr Isaacs (21) grew up in Timaru and moved to Dunedin in 2011
to study at the University of Otago.
Describing himself as a creative person, he felt medicine
limited his creativity and he had no regrets about
terminating his studies.
A year ago, with a friend, he started a business from very
modest beginnings - they used two speakers that had been
sitting in his friend's parents' garage.
Within a week, they had attracted
three bookings and that was the beginning of party hire
business Gravity Events.
He now describes the business as an ''all-in-one'' events
solution, covering sound, lighting, music and photography.
An LED dance floor was recently acquired, a photo booth
built, and he also had a Cube - an inflatable marquee Mr
Isaacs describes as a cross-between a traditional marquee and
a bouncy castle.
The only real glitch in the business so far was when a client
did not think to fill their generator at an event which used
the Cube and it ran out of diesel and the marquee started to
Fortunately, there was some diesel nearby and the problem was
Dealing with people has always been a ''big passion'' for Mr
Isaacs - even at high school, he was ''buying and selling
things'', trying to make some extra pocket money, so he says
the business combines his interests.
Mr Isaacs has an office job during the day and while the
business is still quite small, the aim is to be operating
South Island-wide, in the next three to five years. He has
already catered for events in Gore, Christchurch, Wanaka and
The business no longer involved his friend, but it did
involve his fiancee, Erin Roy, whom he is marrying in
She handles photography and is a freelance make-up artist.
Although Mr Isaacs thought his youth might mean less respect,
he had found age was not such a barrier.
''I think people really like young entrepreneurs or young
people doing something really cool,'' he said.
Part of the idea for Gravity stemmed from his own experience
of being a student and being involved on various student
committees, and having to contact different people to get
services for events, instead of going to a ''one-stop-shop''.
Mr Isaacs has to juggle his fulltime job with the Gravity
business, which he finds challenging.
One weekend, he worked a 50-hour straight stretch, after
finishing his job at lunchtime on Friday and then being
involved with various functions until midnight on the Sunday.
But Mr Isaacs said he liked the idea of taking on more than
he could handle and then figuring out how to make it work.
''When it pays off, it's really awesome,'' he said.
Gravity's main target audience is corporate functions, school
balls and weddings and he is keen to become involved with
community groups and charities.
Being involved with the Audacious business challenge had been
very worthwhile, attending seminars and tapping into the
knowledge of others.
Dunedin had also proved a very supportive community, he said.