Exhibitor Warning!

Warning

It is important that the entire industry is made aware of activities relating to third parties contacting exhibitors for entries into show guides.  An example of one such guide is ‘Fairguide’ (see below for more specific detail) and more recently ‘Expo-Guide’ (click here to learn more about Expo-Guide). We are strongly advising our members and all exhibitors to be vigilant against organisations such as these, who do not represent the good name developed within the exhibitions industry.  Please warn all your exhibitors about such guides and more generally to carefully read small print details before signing any document.

Please also note that despite settling out of court and agreeing to stop sending out misleading forms, Fairguide/Construct Data have altered the look and format of their forms (including a new logo) and are continuing to send these to exhibitors.

Fairguide

Expo Guilde/Fairguide.com/Construct Data Verlag claim to publicises its services to exhibitors at events, primarily in Europe. The company uses a misleading form, which resembles an organiser’s Free Catalogue Listing Service, inviting exhibitors to sign and return the form for an entry in an on-line directory. Doing so contracts the purchaser into the three-year, non-retractable agreement. Non-payment is then followed by aggressive debt collecting by Premium Recovery.

Fairguide.com/Construct Data Verlag have no connection with exhibition organisers or any of their events but they deliberately target exhibitors who are about to exhibit across Europe.

NEW Fairguide form example (if you get one of these, throw it away)
Old Fairguide form example  (if you get one of these, throw it away)

Important Developments 2007 /2008
On 13 February 2007 Construct Data Verlag signed an out of court settlement with the Schutzverband Gegen Unlauteren Wettbewerb (representing Austrian commercial interests in relation to unfair competition).  The initial defence from Construct Data (who are behind the ‘Fair Guide’) was that the Schutzverband represents Austrian commerce and could therefore not act on behalf of companies outside the country.  The Schutzverband for their part argued that CDs activities were so damaging to Austria’s reputation as to constitute a cause for concern to all Austrian businesses. The Schutzverband won this important argument and at this point CD settled out of court, essentially acceding to all the Schutzverband’s main demands. Despite this agreement CD have continued to mail ‘new look’ contracts and continue to demand payment.

Following more recent action by the Schutzverband, CD signed a further agreement on 21st February 2008.

Summary of new undertaking:

1. Construct Data will cease mailing misleading forms from Austria to the EU, Switzerland and EWR (affiliate States of the EU like Liechtenstein)

2. Any persons who dispute the Contracts, regardless of the date of signing or their location can now cancel.

3. Complaints received by the Schutzverband will be forwarded to Construct Data and contracts annulled.

4. Construct Data may continue to demand money from persons who have made a payment, even if they disputed the contract and paid under duress, (however experience shows us that when people make payments and then refuse further demands, Construct Data does not go to court).

5. Construct Data are free to mail forms from Outside Austria

IEOA therefore recommend that ALL companies in dispute with Construct Data who feel deceived should refuse to pay.  It is now important that any organisation that feels it was mislead by Fairguide into signing a contract notifies them immediately using the cancellation letter found via the link below.   

Please click here for further details on the next steps if you have been affected

If you require further guidance please view www.stopecg.org or contact cd@stopecg.org or the Austrian Embassy on london@wko.at

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