The curtain has come down on the Plastics Show. Becky Lerew, who managed the events, said Adams Business Media has postponed the shows indefinitely, starting with the next one, which had been slated for Sept. 12-14 in Ontario, Calif.
"The official word is Adams is reorganizing and restructuring, so they have indefinitely postponed the shows," Lerew said.
Cathedral City, Calif.-based Adams had planned to co-locate that show together with its EMAT shows, which focus on environmental products.
But after the company suspended publication of its related magazines, Environmental Technology and Solid Waste Technology, earlier this year, Adams decided to postpone EMAT and the Plastics Shows, according to Bailey Beeken, director of trade shows and conferences at Adams. Those magazines were based in Solon, Ohio.
"Adams is ... looking to divest itself of some of its titles which have already closed, including the environmental division," Beeken said. "Because of that, we postponed the Plastics Show, which was co-located with the environmental show."
Beeken said that running the Plastics Show didn't make sense without EMAT. "For us, they were tied at the hip because of their co-location," she said.
Adams does not own any plastics titles. It is closing the Cleveland office of the Plastics Shows and laying off Lerew and three colleagues, Lerew said. She said their jobs are over at the end of May.
For Lerew, it could mean the end of a 17-year career organizing trade shows. Contacted May 22, she said her professional future is uncertain.
"I loved the plastics industry," she said.
She managed plastics shows for Advanstar Expositions, then left in 1997 to start her own company, Traverse Lerew Group Inc. in Cleveland. In May 1999, Traverse Lerew filed for Chapter 7 liquidation in U.S. Bankruptcy Court. Lerew said the company got into trouble after its first show, in Philadelphia, when a hotel demanded payment for rooms that were reserved in a block, but unsold.
With Traverse Lerew shut down, Lerew and her three colleagues became employed by Adams Business Media, a trade magazine publisher that was expanding into shows.
Adams held two Plastics Shows last year, in Atlanta and Cincinnati.
Recently, the world of plastics trade shows got even more crowded — as Canon Communications LLC announced it was launching two regional shows in 2001, called Plastec. Backed by magazines Modern Plastics and Injection Molding Magazine, which now share the same ownership, the shows will be co-located with Canon's Medical Design & Manufacturing fairs.
Beeken said the decision by Adams to fold its Plastics Shows was not influenced by Canon's move into the market.