The COVID-19 pandemic has forced many companies, including Indianapolis-based Hamilton Exhibits, to pivot their business models. The family-owned event marketing company, which started by building floats for the 500 Festival Parade more than 70 years ago, has shifted to helping restaurants and schools as they prepare to reopen.
Owner and Chief Executive Officer Dan Cantor talked about the pandemic’s impact on the event industry in an interview on Inside INdiana Business with Gerry Dick.
“It’s been incredibly dramatic on a global scale,” said Cantor. “The first quarter was extremely robust for everybody. We were going 200 miles an hour and we basically hit a brick wall. So (there’s been) substantial unemployment in our industry and live events were canceled.”
Hamilton Exhibits has had to furlough some employees as a result of the pandemic’s impact, however Cantor says new opportunities came along to keep the company in business.
The company partnered with The Legend Classic in the Irvington neighborhood in Indianapolis to install custom acrylic partition barriers inside the restaurant.
Now, the company has shifted to schools and has developed temporary quarantine rooms for students who may start showing symptoms of COVID-19 while in school.
“The CDC and the state health department have suggested strongly the inclusion of isolation spaces in school environments. So (students who are) not feeling well or symptomatic can go to an isolated space that’s safe, out of the public view to wait for their parent or guardian to pick them up.”
Cantor says the modular units can be installed by school maintenance personnel and the company has already begun shipments.