Letter from Ben Bulis: IFTD 2020 postponed
Wednesday, April 8, 2020
Posted by: Matt Smythe
To our industry family,
Earlier this week, the AFFTA Board of Directors voted unanimously to postpone this year’s IFTD show. Comprised of guides, outfitters, manufacturers and retailers, the Board reflects a cross-section of the industry and are all experiencing a tremendous financial loss, just like all of you. In light of the completely unpredictable path of the COVID-19 virus and length of our industry’s—and nation’s—social and economic recovery, we have elected to take decisive action, protect our people and their businesses and continue to find ways to weather these times together.
Make no mistake, this was an exceedingly difficult decision for the AFFTA Board. We are in completely uncharted waters, but we promise to be as diligent and responsive as possible in leading our industry through these tough times.
The factors we considered to arrive at this decision include:
- The safety and health of every last member of our industry
- The length of time that preventative measures will be in place is unknown
- The industry’s uncertain financial picture today and in the future.
- With the economic loss you’re facing, we don’t want members to incur the cost of travel and lodging and time away from businesses to attend IFTD
The solutions we are currently working on:
- Logistics for how exhibitor deposits are handled
- Working with our show vendors, hotels, registration and the convention center to postpone IFTD to 2021
- Developing useful category-specific business resources
- Opening “live” lines of communication
- Bringing our community together via alternative channels
You will hear from us directly, in the coming days, weeks and months as we navigate Covid-19 together. In the meantime, we have created a resource page with up-to-date information on Federal, State and local relief efforts: affta.org/pages/covidresources
Things are changing on a daily basis. We will share what we learn as soon as we have new information. If you have any questions, please feel free to get in touch with me directly. We ask for your patience as we work through this process. We understand that this is a difficult time and will do everything we can to take care of each and every one of you.
Please, stay safe, stay positive, take care of yourselves and your family. I consider each and every one you a dear friend that I would do anything for, so please, contact me directly with any questions. I might not have all the answer, but I will get your questions answered. I wish you well and hope to see each of you very soon on the river or enjoying a dinner together.
Be well, and I hope you and your families are safe.
AFFTA President & CEO