(The following letter was sent to the seafood community by Mary Larkin, president of Diversified Communications, owner of Seafood Expo North America and Seafood Expo Global, regarding the financial health of the owner of the industry's leading seafood trade shows.)

In recent months, there have been reports circulating that call into question the financial viability of Diversified Communications, organizers of Seafood Expo North America, Seafood Expo Global, Seafood Expo Asia and SeafoodSource, during these challenging times.

One article reported a misquote from a local newspaper that the company was in default of a bank loan; other articles, published without our input, have tried to speculate on the lost revenues and profits of our company and raise doubts about Diversified’s ability to weather the pandemic successfully. As our valued customers, I wanted you to hear the facts directly from me that refute the inaccuracies shared about Diversified.

First and foremost, I can confirm that the company is in solid financial condition and has never defaulted on any loans.

Diversified is a privately held, family-owned company, with a long history of conservative fiscal management. We produce major seafood events and media, and equally serve fifteen other industries worldwide, including the medical, solar and unmanned aerial vehicle communities, as examples.

We have diversified our in-person model into many content-led products in different industries; some had already established a successful digital footprint, and others have transitioned very well to that format. This strategy has positioned our company very well to navigate the pandemic and re-emerge as a market leader in global exhibitions.

As the President of UFI, the Global Association of the Exhibition Industry, and as a member of the Board of Directors of SISO, the Society of Independent Show Organizers, I collaborate with organizers around the world, and I understand both the impact the pandemic has had on the events industry globally, as well as the potential solutions to help mitigate those impacts.

We work together with venues and suppliers to ensure the implementation of safety protocols for events. In several countries, travel to events has been deemed essential travel and events are taking place in those areas. Rapid Antigen Testing is also being piloted in several venues to ensure the safety of attendees. We, like many, firmly believe events will be back, and we will open them safely and successfully. We are working relentlessly to offer solutions to provide business continuity for suppliers and buyers to meet again – in-person or virtually.

We have been producing Seafood Expo events for four decades and are determined to continue fostering connections within the industry. We would like you, our customers, to know that we are here, we stand by you, and we are not going anywhere. Many companies are looking forward to exhibiting and attending our events again safely and we sincerely thank them for reaching out to us with words of support.

Whether we are a show organizer, supplier, buyer, industry association or reporter, we are all in this together. This is the time to unite and show support to the industries we work with, and that is exactly what Diversified Communications is doing.


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