Traverse Lerew Group Inc. has filed for bankruptcy, the victim of a lawsuit demanding payment for reserved, but unsold, hotel rooms at last year's Plastics Show Philadelphia, according to the Cleveland show organizer.
Traverse Lerew, founded two years ago by Becky Lerew, filed under Chapter 7 in U.S. Bankruptcy Court on May 12 in Cleveland. The Chapter 7 filing means Traverse Lerew will liquidate.
The company listed liabilities of $406,244 and assets of $20.
The bankruptcy case, meanwhile, will have no impact on future plastics shows managed by Becky Lerew for her new employer, Adams Business Media, a trade magazine publisher in Solon, Ohio, said Lerew and an Adams official.
Plastics Show Philadelphia, held in April 1998, was Traverse Lerew's inaugural show. Lerew said a contract clause to reserve hotel rooms got the company into trouble.
``When we did our first show in Philadelphia, we accidentally signed a contract with an attrition clause in it with the Marriott hotel,'' she said.
The clause required the show organizer to pay for any unfilled rooms in the block of reserved rooms. For first-time events, with no attendance history, predicting the number of show rooms can be difficult, Lerew said.
``We dispute this contract, but we didn't have the money to fight it,'' she said. ``We couldn't fight Marriott Corp.''
Otherwise, Lerew said, Traverse Lerew was a sound company.
``We paid all our bills. We don't owe any money to anybody except for hotels,'' she said.
Earlier this year, Lerew and three others from her company became employees of Adams Business Media. Adams' magazine titles include Design Fax, Quality in Manufacturing, Engineering Digest and Medical Technology. The company has expanded into trade shows in recent years.
Adams held Plastics Show Atlanta from May 18-20, in conjunction with SouthPack. About 3,200 people registered for the plastics part of the show, which accounted for three aisles of the joint event's exhibition space.
The next show for Adams and Lerew will be Plastics Show Cincinnati, Sept. 14-16.