Fan Expo executive acknowledges line-up debacle & pledges changes for 2011

The Toronto Star ran a story today talking about the the line-up and logistcal problems that resulted in fans fuming at Fan Expo.

In that article, the operator of the Fan Expo told his side of things:

Organizers were “definitely overwhelmed” by this weekend’s crowds, said Aman Gupta, president and CEO of Hobby Star Marketing, which operates Fan Expo.

Gupta said a scheduling conflict forced this year’s convention to move from the south hall of the Metro Toronto Convention Centre to the north, which has smaller capacity. Organizers also tried to shorten last year’s lineups by hiring 85 more staff and doubling their ticket entry points. The problem is, the improvements worked a little too well.

“We took last year’s problems, we solved them extremely well to the point where it hurt us in a different area,” Gupta said. “We need to find that happy medium.”

AND

Gupta said door sales were shut down for about three hours Saturday when the main level of the convention centre exceeded capacity.

The weekend was just as tough on staff and volunteers, he said, and two of his publicists actually broke down in tears.

“We’re really sorry and we’re going to do absolutely everything we can to fix this problem for next year,” Gupta said.

More can be found at the Toronto Star.

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