Expo smut could backfire on industry

Delegates at last week&#39s Mortgage Business Expo feel the event was let down by “unprofessional” stand displays including cowboys and scantily clad women.

The most notorious stand was run by Majestic Mortgages which featured a pole dancing act. The show&#39s organisers closed it down on the Wednesday on health and safety grounds but it reappeared towards the end of the day.

The Finance Centre had bunny girls and County Mortgages had girls in orange hotpants.

John Malone, national mortgage manager at Prudential, says: “This could backfire on the industry. The BBC was there and would have seen reputable brands next to pole dancers, cowboys and sports cars. The FSA won&#39t want to be associated with this sort of image.”

Brian Pitt, director of Beacon Capital Holdings, says: “People could have been a bit more imaginative. It&#39s unprofessional, especially with the industry under scrutiny from regulators and the media.”

Show director Andy White of Clarion Events feels some stands went too far. He says: “On the whole we were pleased with the show but it was let down by some exhibitors. We encouraged all exhibitors to avoid putting alcohol or half-naked ladies on the stands and we will be firmer on this next year. The industry doesn&#39t want to be associated with this sort of thing.”