The GDS Group CMO Digital Insight Summit sales pitch is a lie

Are you planning to attend a GDS Group CMO Digital Insight Summit in North America or Europe this March? If so, you won’t see me there. However, GDS sales people are informing prospective sponsors and attendees that I will be attending and looking to network and hire service partners. Nope.

Multiple prospects have asked me about this and it’s just not true. Here’s a screenshot from a sales webinar, showing proof of the lie. No surprise, they messed up the logo.

GDS CMO Digital Insight Summit
Supposed GDS CMO Digital Insight Summit attendees, North America 5 – 7 March 2018

GDS, stop with the fake news. I have contacted your sales people about this blatant misrepresentation and they refuse to acknowledge the situation. Not surprising, as it appears that this is business as usual.

If you are considering sponsoring or attending this event, it might be worth your time and budget. But if you expect to connect with a specific attendee, it’s worth the effort to check references before committing. A simple search and inquiry on LinkedIn will give you plenty of information.

For anyone who’s been lied to by GDS and wants to hear about my digital agenda for 2018, here are some initiatives my team is working on:

If you’re visiting Austin this March, enjoy. If it’s your first visit, here are some things you might want to know.

3 Replies to “The GDS Group CMO Digital Insight Summit sales pitch is a lie”

  1. They appear to me to be a scam. I was contacted by someone today claiming to be working on behalf of PNC Bank in the area of “deep learning” research. Looking at the background, the person he then set the call up with and the speed of the response it looks to me like a boiler room scam trying to con small and medium sized companies into paying to attend a worthless B2B conference (where the delegates cancel at the last minute) or some nonsense “white paper” is distributed to a worthless list. 20 minutes on Google and Glassdoor confirms (to me at least) that GDS Group and GDS International are a bunch of con-artists.

    I am well connected with the heads of data science, CIO, CDO for AI projects at 5 USA banks. There is no way that the two cowboys from GDSGroup, who contacted me could be speaking closely to PNC Bank and not also have common connections with me in LinkedIn since in the area of AI and Machine Learning I am once of the best connected people in the world. They were both 3rd degree which means they are lying.

    Also the person that reaches out to you is a junior grunt and the person who takes the organised call is difference (more experienced at scamming people). That is classic boiler room stuff and not the modus operandi of a legitimate consulting company.

    1. We’ve been contacted by them consistently over 10 years despite our requests to not contact us. The pitch is always the same, name dropping someone who they think we might know (or in one case we did know and we contacted them to learn they had nothing to do with the event). We got pitched for an AI event and “were shortlisted” by big insurance company (in this case AIG) for “AI work of which they couldn’t even explain. I don’t know how they’re still in business and if they’re reading this PLEASE finally leave us off your contact list.

  2. Absolutely terrible company trying to sell however way they can. I was roped into (almost) going to a conference – but then upon (unfortunately) signing the agreement, looked at the vendor list and finalized speaker agenda – and realized it was totally unrelated to my job function. They just wanted someone in a seat (and the brand equity/notoriety of the company I work for is high – so great PR for them to try and draw in more vendors/sponsors). When I expressed sincere reservations about being a good prospect/lead for ANY of their vendors, they simply said “Well, maybe one will be top of mind for you or right for you in some years.” I wonder if their vendor partners know this is how they’re thinking! I then had an important half-day meeting come up with a large team and they said “Well, that means you won’t be able to attend the middle day, which means you won’t be able to meet with anyone.” Ultimately, I paid a $1,875 cancellation charge only 2 weeks after I signed the contract (1 week after I’d originally expressed my reservations on attending) and 3 weeks before the conference.) I refused to replace my slot with some other poor sucker, so cancellation fee it was! Do NOT do business with them! Smoke and mirrors all the way.

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