400 exhibition developers were on the verge of bankruptcy

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  • 19/03/2020

  • Ivan Nikolsky

  • Industry today

  • 3 minutes 20 seconds


The cumulative losses of operators and developers of exhibition stands as of March 19 amounted to 15 billion rubles and continue to grow. The liquidation of these companies will leave about 20 thousand people out of work.

According to the SRO "Union of Exhibition Developers", more than 400 companies specializing in the production of exhibition stands and logistics were on the verge of bankruptcy due to the cancellation of all major events in Russia in the first half of 2020

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The emergency situation related to the coronavirus pandemic has reached all participants of the exhibition industry in Russia. First of all, operators and exhibition developers suffered. These companies, in the absolute majority— are small and medium-sized businesses. They undergo competitive selection for participation in tenders of state and corporate customers at their own expense. Preparation and installation of temporary structures (stands and exhibitions), according to the rules of the game of this market, is also carried out at their expense. All contracts are concluded on a post-payment basis.

Cancellation of such events as the annual SPIEF, the Sochi Investment Forum (RIF), the Eastern Economic Forum (WEF), as well as other regular major industry exhibitions (more than 100 events). caused huge losses on the payments made for exhibition space, purchased and not in demand construction materials, leased technical means and equipment, etc. The total area of production areas is 154,000 sq. m. In addition to developers and operators, these losses directly affect suppliers of materials for exhibition companies (chipboard, films, banners, paints, etc.).

Operators, developers and suppliers have already started to cut staff. Thousands of employees will lose their jobs even before quarantine is lifted in Russia on May 1, 2020. Among them are architects, designers, engineers, designers, production specialists, electricians, decorators and office staff. The enterprises of the industry do not have the opportunity to save jobs. All contracts have been cancelled, as the pandemic is interpreted by lawyers as force majeure, in which the parties to the contract remain in debt to each other.

Some companies that specialized in supporting the participation of Russian corporations in foreign exhibitions found themselves in an even more deplorable situation. They suffer double financial losses due to currency surges.

We hope that the state will find reserves and launch mechanisms to assist not only the organizers, but also direct performers under exhibition contracts, including fiscal relief and preferential lending opportunities.

At the moment, signatures are being collected under the memorandum. If possible, we ask you to distribute the text of the memorandum and highlight the emergency situation in the exhibition industry.

You can send your proposals to the Union of Exhibition Developers.

Ivan Nikolsky



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