Emerald Holding, parent of PhotoPlus, provides update on future events

Emerald Holding Inc. announced it will not stage any first- and second-quarter events – until early June, at the earliest – as a result of the evolving impact of COVID-19 on the global economy, the events industry, and Emerald’s business. To date, Emerald has postponed 20 events, originally scheduled to occur between March and June 2020 , equating to approximately $45 million of 2019 revenue, and has canceled 10 events, including the March editions of ASD Market Week and JA New York, which accounted for approximately $50 million of 2019 revenue. The company added it has event-cancellation insurance.

PhotoPlus Expo is still listed on the Emerald Holding website as taking place Oct. 22-24, 2020, in New York City.

“Emerald’s primary focus is on the health and safety of our employees, exhibitors, attendees and the communities that our events are built to serve,” says Brian Field, interim president and CEO. “Due to the declaration of a federal national emergency by the President of the United States and by various individual states; recommendations and mandates provided by various local, state and federal government agencies and public health authorities regarding social distancing, containment areas, and against large public gatherings; travel restrictions imposed by the U.S. and foreign governments and by companies as applied to their employees; various event venue closures; as well as a variety of other factors, Emerald has updated its calendar of events originally set to stage over the coming weeks and months.”

In other Emerald news, Emerald’s Board of Directors has temporarily suspended the company’s regular quarterly cash dividend on its common stock, “due to uncertainty from the rapidly evolving impact of COVID-19 on the travel and events industry.”

“Given the changes to our event schedule announced earlier this week and due to the ongoing uncertainty surrounding near-term business conditions, the Board and Emerald management firmly believe preserving liquidity is in the best interest of all stakeholders and is the prudent course of action to maintain flexibility and navigate these unprecedented times,” says Field. “In addition to suspending our dividend, we are also implementing a broad range of initiatives designed to further preserve capital and liquidity, including, but not limited to, cutting costs, putting a temporary freeze on company travel and hiring, and suspending purchases under the Company’s share buyback plan. Taken together, we believe these are the right actions to position Emerald to successfully weather this challenging environment.”