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Orlando Businesswoman Kristine Iverson Calls For Federal Relief for Live Events Industry

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Photo: Dane Wetton

More than 12 million people in the live events industry have been furloughed or laid off during the pandemic with thousands affected in Central Florida. 

But the live events industry has so far not been included in any federal coronavirus relief packages. 

90.7 WMFE spoke with Kristine Iverson founder of CROW Practice a live events wellness company in Orlando about why she’s calling for assistance now.

Read the full conversation below.

Danielle: Tell me a little bit about what your experience applying for the PPP loan was?

Kristine: Yes, so I actually applied twice for the PPP loan, and I was denied it both times. So for me, a lot of people I know received it both in the industry and out of the industry. It’s a bit disheartening to know that there are actually companies that may have misused it. The impact on my small company is that I had three team members. Although I’d hired over 80 contractors within our lifespan. I had three team members which have all been let go.

Danielle: Did they tell you why you were denied both times?

Kristine: They mentioned a line. I want to say it was line 34 if I recall correctly off the top of my head, but I don’t, I was never clear about why I was denied the funds.

Danielle: Have you gotten any other sort of financial assistance, any other grants or loans, you know that your company has been successful getting in place of that PPP?

Kristine: I did receive the EIDL loan. But honestly, I have several, you know, credit cards. So, I other than that, no, no. I did apply for numerous things. But the I mean, the live events industry as a whole has been hit hard.

Danielle: Do you think that your company will be able to recover this hit that it’s taken?

Kristine: I am grateful. I do feel as though we’re going to be able to ride this out. And that is because I went for a full-time job interview and agreed both on my side and his side that what I was interviewing was not a good fit. But I was able to create a consulting position from that. So, I feel like now I personally have the stability that I need. And CROW, it’s kind of like the company in year one when I was building it and it wasn’t my focus and I had to do other things to support myself. I’m back there now.

Danielle: What would you need or what would you want over the next few months to just get through for your company, but also for the, for your industry in general?

Kristine: There’s a #RedAlertRESTART going around on Facebook. But essentially, I am may not have all the details correct here, but I believe that the industry has asked the federal government for money and the essentially the live events industry is not receiving any type of relief like the cruise ships or the airlines or some of the other industries. So I feel like for the industry overall, I mean so I mean these are entertainers. These are people you know centerpieces and table lighting, AV sound people. This industry is huge in Orlando, in Chicago, in Vegas and yeah, I suppose I wish overall, that there would be a little bit of relief for this industry. And then for my company personally.

If you’d like to listen to the full interview, click on the clip at the top of the page. 

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Danielle Prieur

About Danielle Prieur

Reporter & Fill-in Host

Danielle Prieur is a general assignment reporter at WMFE. You can hear her reporting on a daily basis on the station. She also fills-in as a host during the morning and afternoon drive times. Her reporting has been featured on NPR, Marketplace, Here & Now, and Vox. Danielle is originally from Rochester Hills, ... Read Full Bio »