Frederick, Md.-based Signature Special Event Services has shed less than 10 percent of its special event equipment inventory through the closure of its California branch and the sale of a line of its tents to Los Angeles-based Classic Party Rentals last month. This report corrects the article from "Eventline" last week suggesting that Signature sold substantially more of its inventory.
The structures sold largely represent the inventory that SSES acquired in 2004 when it bought the tent rental assets of Los Angeles-based Academy Tent & Canvas, which closed its doors earlier that year, SSES president Tom Brown tells Special Events.
The Acadaspan tents were "specifically used for the U.S. Open and PGA, but major golf tournaments do not fit into our strategy going forward," Brown says. "We still have structures and tenting, kitchen and catering equipment, generators, air conditioning, power distribution, lights, flooring--all ancillary equipment that goes with the tents. We still have our government and military clients, corporate, sporting, social and disaster relief as before. But we are leaning more toward long-term events."
"One issue we faced with the PGA and U.S. Open is that these are very big, short-lived events, and we had a disproportionate amount of our resources devoted to those events," says Don Yount, chief operating officer of SSES parent TVI Corp. The shift in focus away from what TVI terms "low-margin, shorter-term hospitality events" toward "more profitable facilities work" is "a way for us to diversify our revenue stream," Yount says.