At a press conference held at Taj Hotel Mumbai, AP Parigi, MD, Times Infotainment Media limited unveiled the changes brought in to augment the event. Speaking on the occasion Parigi said, "Femina Miss India has been acknowledged internationally as one of the best conceived and professionally run pageants. In a move to further enhance its status, the organisation has empanelled Ernst & Young as official notary and tabulators."
As to how Ernst & Young would add value to the pageant, Farokh T Balsara, Partner, Ernst & Young, India, explained to the exchange4media correspondent, "We had a look at processes being adopted by international pageants like Miss America, Ms universe etc. We, then, compared them to what has been adopted for Femina Ms India over the last few years. By breaking down the processes in sections, you find out if what you are doing is fine, or you need to do some new things, or bring some refinement in what is being done. We discovered that, in most cases, the processes that were adopted were fairly good and robust. We have just done some very minor tweaking of that".
Ernst & Young would also be involved in the tabulation process, and would be introducing 'resolve a ballet' technology. Explains Balsara, "As we go to elimination, semifinal and final rounds, the scores awarded by panel of judges will come to us. We will tabulate that and come up with final ranking. For the first time we would be using what is called 'resolve a ballet' technology - press a button, and scores will get compiled. It is widely used in sports events like Olympics and gymnastic meets."
Moving on to title sponsorship, close on the heels of cosponsoring Lakme Fashion Week, Sunsilk is the main sponsor for Sunsilk Femina Miss India 2003, and would continue to sponsor the event for the three coming years. Says D Shivakumar, Business Unit Head - Hair Care, Hindustan Lever Limited, "Sunsilk is all about understanding the woman and her spirit. If you look at young Indian women across the country, the aspiration is to be recognised as an individual and being understood as a person. Sunsilk is the best beauty brand in this country. It is a powerful brand - the biggest connect is in the area of the person's individuality and the spirit."
Would Sunsilk launch a new campaign to emphasise on its synergy with what Indian women are all about? "Yes, we are planning a new campaign for Sunsilk and it would be out by the end of this month. It is about understanding the woman and what she is all about," elucidates Shivakumar.
30 lovely ladies who would be participating in the semifinals for the pageant in the year 2003 were present at the press meet, and also present were the experts and trainers who would be changing the ducklings into the swans.
Femina Miss India semi finals will be held on 24 Jan 2003, and grand finale would be on 31 January 2003. The show would be aired live on Sony Entertainment Television.
ITC Grand Maratha Sheraton & Towers, and the Amby Valley Sahara Lake City are also extending support to the pageant.