Businesses Risk Losing Thousands in Possible Tradeshow Scam
BBB Warns Upcoming Shows in Central Texas Are Bogus
San Antonio, TX -- BBB warns local business owners to ignore advertisements and solicitations for Women's Expo tradeshows promoted by Exposition & Festivals Incorporated. According to the company's website, tradeshows were planned for this weekend in San Antonio and Austin, TX. However, according to directors at the San Antonio Convention Center and the Austin Palmer Events Center, these events were never confirmed. It appears as though the tradeshows were never intended to be held, leaving businesses that paid to participate without any return on their investments.
Exposition & Festivals Incorporated, represented by Lia Johnson and Sheila White, has an F-rating from BBB for failing to respond to multiple complaints. Businesses complain that they paid the company hundreds and sometimes thousands of dollars up front for booth reservations only to learn later the tradeshow was canceled or delayed for months. According to the contract set forth by Exposition & Festivals Incorporated, no refunds are made under any circumstances, even if the show is canceled.
A local Austin business owner* signed up to be a vendor at one of the company's recent tradeshows, originally scheduled for October 2010, but then learned that it had been rescheduled to December and then again to May. The vendor continued to agree to the rescheduled dates, only to learn that the show scheduled for May was eventually canceled. The vendor asked Exposition & Festivals Incorporated for a refund of the money paid to participate in the show, but never received one.
The company's website states the May tradeshow in Austin was canceled due to the Alabama weather. On the contrary, an official with the Palmer Events Center where the show was alleged to be held, stated that the venue refused to ever host the show due to complaints from local vendors and previous problems scheduling events for this company.
Another business owner from Dallas found herself threatened with legal action after asking the company for a refund when the tradeshow was rescheduled two weeks before it was scheduled to take place. Company officials told this vendor that The National Woman Tour, the host of Women's Expo shows, has been sold to the Southeast Women's Chamber. The website, www.nationalwomantour.com, makes no mention of the change in ownership and currently advertises upcoming shows in Atlanta, Georgia and Huntsville, Alabama.
BBB was unable to confirm that any of the tradeshows advertised by Exposition & Festivals Incorporated are ever actually held. Businesses that choose to pay for booths at the company's alleged tradeshows are at a high risk of paying thousands of dollars for a fictitious opportunity. For more information, click here to view the company's current BBB Business Review.
When considering the purchase of tradeshow booths, BBB advises businesses to:
· Check with the venue and confirm the time and location.
· Research the host organization by reading its online BBB Business Review.
· Get all details in writing. Carefully review the terms and conditions, as well as exhibitor options in case the event is canceled or rescheduled.
· Find out if the event has been held before, and if so, ask to speak to other businesses who attended.
· Consider paying for the event by credit card. If the services are not rendered as promised, it may be possible to dispute the charge through your credit card provider.
· Be wary of any websites promoting tradeshow events that do not list the name and address of the trade show organizer or promoter.
· Ask event organizers about add-on costs, such as fees for electricity and Internet hookup, tables and tablecloths and other charges that may not be included in the booth rental fees.
To check the reliability of a company, visit www.bbb.org.
About Better Business Bureau:
BBB's mission is to be the leader in advancing marketplace trust. BBB accomplishes this mission by creating a community of trustworthy businesses, setting standards for marketplace trust, encouraging and supporting best practices, celebrating marketplace role models and denouncing substandard marketplace behavior.
Businesses that earn BBB Accreditation contractually agree and adhere to the organization's high standards of ethical business behavior. BBB is the preeminent resource to turn to for objective, unbiased information on businesses and charities.
Contact BBB serving Central, Coastal, Southwest Texas and the Permian Basin at (512) 445-4748.
Your Opinions and Comments
Be the first to comment on this story!
You must be logged in to post a comment.
Breaking News Archives
AgriLife Extension to offer programs on Zika, mosquito management in SA (August 24, 2016)
Falls City plans early release for Bruni game Aug. 26 (August 23, 2016)
Most Wanted Fugitive Captured in San Antonio (August 23, 2016)
Watch for signal lights at Standish and Fourth streets (August 23, 2016)
Filing deadline Aug. 25 for Floresville council Place 3, today for other offices (August 22, 2016)
Nixon-Smiley CISD closed first day of school (August 22, 2016)
Rain totals for the week (August 22, 2016)
Overnight flooding causes widespread damage in Wilson County; emergency... (August 21, 2016)
Shelter for flood victims open in Floresville (August 21, 2016)
Poth football scrimmage moved (August 18, 2016)
Counterfeit $20 bills spotted in Floresville (August 17, 2016)
DPS Reminds Drivers to Obey Traffic Laws, Watch For Children As New School... (August 17, 2016)
Weather moves Falls City Aug. 18 scrimmage (August 17, 2016)
Johnny Garcia: One of Texas 10 Most Wanted Fugitives (August 16, 2016)
Flash flood watch issued (August 15, 2016)
Local rain reports (August 15, 2016)
Authorities seek information on vehicle theft (August 11, 2016)
Texas Rangers arrest Nixon city manager (August 11, 2016)
What’s going on? Floresville Police Department closed (August 11, 2016)
Floresville Event Center fire-suppression system fails inspection; city... (August 10, 2016)
Venue change for Rancho de las Cabras film (August 10, 2016)
Police arrest suspect in Nixon armed robbery (August 3, 2016)
Prescribed Burn Planned for Government Canyon State Natural Area Wednesday (August 2, 2016)