SF-based Acteva under fire after collecting donations, keeping cash


The company is Acteva and it has been around for years. If you are involved with a nonprofit or a trade show, you may have been involved with this company.

Acteva runs a website that takes online registration payments for, as its website says, events, meetings, webinars, fundraisers, conferences, tradeshows, classes and training programs.

Participants sign up online. Acteva takes a cut of the proceeds and it's supposed to pass the rest on to the organization.

"And this year, the check did not arrive," said Lori Weisberg, a board member of the San Diego Society of Professional Journalists.

The organization held a fundraising dinner earlier this year.

Hundreds were in attendance, thousands of dollars were raised and not one dime got to the organization.

"This is a company that caters mostly to nonprofits organizations that can least afford to have this kind of financial hit," Weisberg said.

The Society of Professional journalists are not alone.

Activist Jason Brown estimates Acteva owes organizations millions of dollars.

Brown has set up a website called ActevaSucks.info, which says it is dedicated to educate the public and nonprofit companies about the business practices of Acteva.

"I have gone through a whole range of emotions on this. I've had fits of anger one day. One day I got emotionally choked up on it when I saw one of the organizations was checking out my site," he said.

Brown says a Bay Area-based university and a local environmental group are among the dozens of groups that have contacted him.

He says many organizations don't want their names revealed.

7 On Your Side contacted Acteva.

Michael Finney: "You are giving me a lot of details, but you aren't giving your customers any money."

The CEO Pankaj Gupta declined an on camera interview but talked to 7 On Your Side by phone.

Gupta said the amount owed is in the range of $5 million, that none of this was intentional and his goal is pay everyone back.

Gupta told 7 On Your Side's Michael Finney he has had dialog with the San Francisco District Attorney's office. We contacted the district attorney's office and were told there is no pending case involving Acteva.

Copyright © 2023 KGO-TV. All Rights Reserved.