Entrepreneur Cancels Women's Conference : Seminar: Magazine publisher gives no reason for the delay. The meeting would have brought 900 business people to Irvine.

TIMES STAFF WRITER

Entrepreneur Group, publisher of Entrepreneur magazine, has postponed a conference that was to have brought about 900 businesswomen to Irvine on Saturday.

The company would not say why the second annual Entrepreneurial Woman's Seminar is being delayed.

Entrepreneur's staff members and volunteers spent Wednesday faxing and telephoning people who had planned to attend, said Toni Chan, the company's special events manager. Several exhibitors, she said, had already flown in from New York, Florida and other parts of the nation.

Chan said they will be reimbursed and that "most people have been very understanding."

The decision to delay the conference was made late Tuesday night by her superiors at the company, Chan said. Earlier that evening, she said, she had phoned the Irvine Marriott to confirm meal reservations for 900 people and that the group would have use of the conference room.

She said she could not estimate how much the postponement will cost Entrepreneur Group. The company hopes to set a new date for the conference--possibly late February--sometime today, she said.

The hotel, where the conference was to have been held, learned of the postponement when a newspaper reporter called Wednesday afternoon, said Garry Abel, the hotel's director of marketing.

He said the Marriott will charge Entrepreneur Group a cancellation fee but will still lose money. "There is no way we can replace that business on such short notice," Abel said. He would not say how much the last-minute change in plans will cost his company or how much the cancellation fee will be.

The Marriott had been planning to play host to a continental breakfast, lunch and reception for the group. Abel said he was counting on 600 attending.

The conference was to have been Entrepreneur's second. Last year, the first conference drew more than 600 participants who attended workshops on business management, taxes, advertising strategies and other topics of interest to women entrepreneurs.

In addition to Entrepreneur magazine, the Irvine-based company publishes New Business Opportunities magazine and a library of how-to business books. In July, it stopped publishing Entrepreneurial Woman magazine on a regular basis, citing lack of advertiser interest.

Entrepreneur, a national monthly publication catering to small-business owners, has been publishing since the early 1970s. It claimed 340,000 subscribers last year.

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