Bankruptcy File On DSE Says No Money Available To Pay Creditors

September 29, 2020 by Dave Haynes

Now that the dust has kinda settled on the news a week ago that the live events company behind Digital Signage Expo had entered bankruptcy proceedings and the show was dead, the business realities are growing more apparent.

There will be no show in November – after the show was postponed from the end of Q1 to Q2 and then ultimately to Q4. Those companies hoping to see money back from Exponation, for things like exhibit deposits, appear to be out of luck.

The Atlanta court processing the Chapter 7 bankruptcy proceedings has sent a form around to creditors suggesting there’s no food in the cupboard, so please don’t chase us around looking for money back. At least not now …

The form says:

No property appears to be available to pay creditors. Therefore, please do not file a proof of claim now.

If it later appears that assets are available to pay creditors, the clerk will send you another notice telling you that you may file a proof of claim, and stating the deadline.

While most of the comments after news broke last week focused on the positive contribution the show made to the industry in its more nascent years, at least one comment likely represents the point of view of vendor and attendees who are out real money, and unlikely to see any of it back.

Despite the positive and “they are a victim” tone of this article, it also has to be said that DSE management did not do any effort to organize a virtual event, and never offered refunds, but happily kept the money paid by exhibitors (some of which, like us, paid a year in advance) and even conference attendees (whose tickets from March were not refunded but ‘rolled forward’ for the event in November).

Unfortunate mess.

One thing that got somewhat lost in the shuffle last week was the demise, as well, of Digital Signage Connection, the online publication produced by Exponation. It also had a podcast.  There are not a lot of editorial voices covering this industry, so it is sad when one drops off. I always liked the extended, enhanced pieces they did on awards nominees and winners.


  1. Looks like the old competitor at Networld is in position to salvage the remains. That’s a long story.

  2. Any predictions on DSF? What are the possibilities I wonder.

  3. Bart DeCanne says:

    Thank you for quoting my single critical comment of last week to your article then. I could not believe to see only positive comments towards the organizers last week, though mostly from DSF folks who thus had a financial benefit from DSE show management in the past.
    The fact that no money is available, after show management paid themselves handily in final months, as now reported in another publication, clearly shows the nature of these folks. Fortunately the internet will make sure this will remain a stain on Gibbs, Varrone and co’s future endeavors that will be just one Google search away.

Leave a comment