Fireside Chat with Faizan Aslam (BookMe.Pk)- Presented by AWS

Apr 11, 2020, 4:00 – 5:00 PM

Faizan Aslam is the Founder & CEO of BookMe, Pakistan's leading online ticketing portal for movies, events, and buses borne out of a desire to help others. BookMe pioneered e-ticketing in Pakistan, introduced variable fares with bus ticketing in Pakistan, expanded operations to Myanmar and is one of the top e-commerce players in Pakistan in terms of number of transactions.

Virtual event

About this event

Faizan Aslam, Founder & CEO of e-ticketing startup BookMe, was your typical college student. His first entrepreneurial endeavor was a simple printing business. Faizan, who shared his college dormitory with 2,500 other students, bought a basic Inkjet printer for approximately US$30 and started charging his peers a few cents for simple printing jobs. Alternative printing facilities were located a fair distance away and this rudimentary solution was cheap and convenient.

Unfortunately in the mid-2000s accessing the internet was a costly proposition in Pakistan. Luckily for him, a new internet service provider was setting up shop in Islamabad and was eager to cater to students. Faizan, at the time a college sophomore, visited their office and negotiated a special deal and helped market the service amongst his peers, earning commissions on each sale. In his first month alone he sold more than 500 modems, making a handsome profit of almost US$3,500.

Eventually sales hit a plateau but by now Faizan was hooked onto the entrepreneurial bug. He knew the internet was a great equalizer and wanted to leverage it further. Faizan, a software engineer by training, roped in a friend and opened an account on freelance site Rent A Coder. He nabbed his first few projects almost immediately: designing websites and logos, and dabbling in data entry and setup a formal company after graduation.

The new company, Makro Pak Solutions, no longer relied on freelancing platforms to source projects. Faizan’s roster of clients had grown to an extent that he was able to tap existing networks for outsourcing/consulting work. As he scaled up, his team grew to more than 30 people. Unfortunately, disaster struck and Makro Pak Solutions had to be wrapped up due to receivables of around US$65,000, Faizan was forced to lay off almost all his staff. The ones who remained did so out of personal loyalty rather than unbridled optimism for the future.

Faizan was now back to square one but determined to forge a new path. By now Faizan was married. After two failed attempts to buy cinema tickets with his wife, he understood this was undoubtedly a pain point experienced by other consumers. His new startup, BookMe, an online ticketing portal for movies, events, and buses was borne out of a desire to help others. Since launch, BookMe has been making steady progress. It’s been a Startup Arena finalist at Tech in Asia Jakarta 2014, expanded operations to Myanmar, and most importantly raised cash valuing the firm at US$4 million.

“I’ve applied all the learnings from my previous failures in BookMe,” explains Faizan. “We try to be as lean as possible, diversify revenue channels, and keep building products that our users want. Nothing can ever be perfect but it’s important to keep learning and growing.”

Exclusive application for 1:1 Mentorship with an AWS expert

As a Startup Grind community member, you are invited to apply for our exclusive AWS + Startup Grind Mentorship Program as part of Mentorship Month.

Selected applicants will have the opportunity to participate in a one-on-one mentor session to get guidance on how to grow and develop your business and allow you to get first-hand advice from experts in your field. We offer 5 distinct mentoring tracks that you can choose from, including Fundraising, Product, Marketing, Sales, or Strategy & Ops, and you will get paired with an AWS expert in the field of your choice. All sessions are held remotely, and the program is completely free for all participants.

Apply today

Check out what happened


  • Faizan Aslam

    Founder, CEO



Saturday, April 11, 2020
4:00 PM – 5:00 PM UTC


Question & Answers


  • Abdul Rehman

    Startup Grind Sahiwal

    Chapter Director

  • Rimsha Khalid

    The Eventor

    Program Manager


    The Eventor

    Core Team


ERozgaar Program logo

ERozgaar Program

Developers Student Club COMSATS Sahiwal logo

Developers Student Club COMSATS Sahiwal

Facebook Developers Circle Sahiwal logo

Facebook Developers Circle Sahiwal

Xavier Consultants logo

Xavier Consultants

About Startup Grind

This is Startup Grind. We are the world’s largest startup community.

Our Mission

To give startups everywhere the education and opportunities they need to build, grow, and scale their companies.

Our Values

We believe in making friends, not contacts. We believe in giving first, not taking. We believe in helping others before helping yourself.

Tools & Discounts for Startups

Take advantage of resources and offers provided by organizations we know and love, designed to help you navigate the startup journey.

Global Conference

Our annual flagship event in Silicon Valley brings together thousands of startup teams, investors and organizations from all over the world.

Join the Startup Membership

This membership gives you free access to networking, events, mentorship, office hours, and other exclusive opportunities curated by Startup Grind HQ.