Leading the pack and making entertainment more entertaining

Tech stack
MVP launch date
Ruby On Rails
3 984 258

Howler began its journey as a cashless event solution and has since transformed into a platform that is revolutionising event management. Howler addresses the pain points of traditional events, offering streamlined experiences for organisers, vendors, and attendees.

The challenge

The Platform45 team began development in 2016, in what started out as a rebuild of an existing web application, Howler has evolved to become an end-to-end events technology platform and the only 360-degree event solution in not only Africa, but Europe as well -  a true South-African success story in the tech  space! Originally created  as an "event discovery" portal, Howler has evolved into a comprehensive community-driven platform tailored to party-goers, festival enthusiasts, and conference attendees. Let’s delve into the  strategies and solutions we have employed to create and scale a platform like Howler.

Scaling for success

The central challenge for Howler lies in its capacity to handle the influx of users during peak times, such as ticket launches for  major events. With masses of users converging on the website simultaneously, the strain on servers, databases, and the ticketing platform itself can be immense. To tackle this, we invested heavily in scaling Howler’s infrastructure, ensuring that its system can efficiently accommodate the surge in demand without compromising performance or user experience.

Performance excellence

Continually enhancing performance is a necessity for businesses like Howler. Improved performance directly correlates with scalability, enabling the platform to seamlessly accommodate growing user numbers and traffic spikes. However, achieving optimal performance is no small feat, especially for a large-scale, long-term project with a complex codebase and a team of developers collaborating on multiple fronts.

Balancing load with queuing systems

During high demand scenarios, the platform takes a proactive approach to safeguarding user experience and performance by implementing an online queuing mechanism to manage user traffic and reduce system overload.

Adapting to industry trends

In response to evolving trends in the event industry, Howler is committed to providing white-labeled solutions that cater to the needs of organisers.

Integrating complex systems

Beyond ticketing;  Howler offers cashless solutions and access control services, further expanding  its technological landscape.

The solution

By continuously  leveraging data and insights in the data-driven world of event management, Howler collates vast amounts of data to drive technical decision-making and enhance user experiences for both organisers and attendees. For Howler, staying at the forefront of innovation while maintaining operational excellence is not just a goal but a fundamental principle driving its success.We're proud to be part of a unicorn project like Howler!

Managing these moving parts requires a strategic approach, coupled with efficient problem-solving and troubleshooting capabilities.
Derrick Barlow Tech Lead

Howler has evolved to become an end-to-end events technology platform and the only 360-degree event solution in Africa:

  • Easy for organisers to market their event, sell tickets, issue wristbands, pay vendors.
  • Easy for vendors to load menus and prices, swipe cashless cards, access their earnings.
  • Easy for customers to buy tickets, load cashless cards, top-up, get refunds.

One of the coolest things we’ve done is automate the settlement process. Customers get their wristbands and vendors get a device that tracks sales.

After the event, within 72 hours we’ve settled with both the customers and the vendors - something that usually takes a week or two with event organisers or event management apps.

This makes vendors especially happy, because they’re cash businesses, and often have to pay upfront for an event and wait weeks for their payout.

With Howler, it’s down to three days.

Shai Evian
Chief Executive Officer