Monday, July 13, 2020

The Association of Corporate Travel Executives (ACTE), an organization founded in 1988 for the global corporate travel community, has filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy and has ceased operations, according to an announcement from the ACTE Board on its website on July 7.

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ACTE cited its back-to-back canceled events, where it derived the majority of its revenue, as the impetus for its decision. Last summer, the association was forced to cancel its August Asia conference in Macau due to security concerns for its attendees and vendors after the continued protests plagued Hong Kong. This year, ACTE’s New York Global Summit, scheduled for April, was also canceled after the unfortunate timing with the pandemic.

According to the letter: “The employees and board members of ACTE have worked tirelessly to reduce costs and find a home for the ACTE community within a larger organization. … At this stage, the fiscally, and morally, responsible next step for us to do, is to cease operations. ... For our members and sponsors, we want to say how deeply disappointed we are that we have not been able to continue our operations. When we opened ACTEConnect for the whole industry, we were inspired to see the resiliency of our community and the determination to rebuild. We regret we have not been able to find a lifeline to allow ACTE to continue to play a role in your recovery. It has been a joy to be part of this movement and we hope that the relationships you have made through ACTE continue and be fruitful for years and years to come.”

The entire announcement can be viewed on its website at


Karen Lotts WLA Secretary/Treasurer Karen Lotts of A Knight Rider Limousine

On Wednesday, July 8, the Wisconsin Limousine Association (WLA) held a short conference call for members and guests to discuss industry-related happenings in the Midwest. WLA Secretary/Treasurer Karen Lotts of A Knight Rider Limousine moderated the meeting, which included CD Editor Rob Smentek.

Bill Battisti Bill Battisti of Midwest Transit

Shortly before the call, the PGA of America announced that the Ryder Cup golf tournament has been postponed until September 2021. Expected to be held this year at Whistling Straits in Kohler, Wisc., the Ryder Cup was to be a major event for Midwestern operators, so this news, while not unexpected, was disappointing to the WLA members. The PGA similarly postponed the 2021 Presidents Cup tournament to September 2022, which will undoubtedly concern North Carolina operators.

As expected, COVID-19 was discussed among those on the call. Members shared their frustration at the lack of definitive statistics as well as continued difficulty in finding cleaning supplies. Lotts was particularly gobsmacked by Lysol being sold for $14 per can on Amazon. Vendor Member Bill Battisti of Midwest Transit/Nationwide Bus Sales let members know that he is fully stocked on safety and prevention accessories for limousines and buses.


Before the call concluded, DeVon Gillespie of Milwaukee Executive Livery confirmed that the Democratic National Convention is still being held in Milwaukee, but will be a “virtual” event.

The next WLA conference call is scheduled for Wednesday, August 12 at 1:00 PM CT.

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The Global Business Travel Association (GBTA) Board of Directors today announced that they have canceled the scheduled fall conference. The conference, which was originally scheduled for this month in Denver, was pushed back to November early in the COVID-19 pandemic. The association was hopeful that the massive annual event, which draws thousands of worldwide attendees and vendors from all sectors of business travel, would be held at a time when things were getting back to normal for travel professionals.


The move was not altogether unexpected as GBTA leadership monitored the situation closely. Although there was mixed demand from association members, according to GBTA surveys, the current conditions made it impossible.

From the letter:
“Over the past few months, GBTA staff and leadership have explored every option possible to proceed with the association’s 2020 Convention set for November in Denver, Colorado. That said, with the COVID-19 pandemic continuing to spike globally and the Denver Convention Center dedicated to a temporary medical facility, the convention center cannot be made available to us for our November dates so they have had to cancel our event.

"We understand that this decision may come as a disappointment to you exactly as it has to each of us, as we, too, very much look forward to what annually represents ‘The Business Travel Event of the Year®.’ One of the unfortunate realities of this pandemic and its many accompanying challenges has been its outsized impact on business travel and our industry worldwide. We, too, had looked forward to reconnecting this year at GBTA Convention 2020, to draw strength from one another and to share best practices and creative, collaborative ideas for how to succeed in such an unprecedented and challenging environment.”

GBTA says that it will have additional information about “the next steps” in the coming days.  

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