Thai transgender owner of Miss Universe pageant aiming high

Reveling in the success of the recently concluded Miss Universe pageant, Jakkaphong “Anne” Jakrajutatip, the Thai transgender entrepreneur and owner of the brand, vowed to transform the competition to make it more socially relevant and more profitable in years to come.
Anne, who bought the organization for $20 million last year, told the audience in New Orleans that Miss Universe would adopt a new direction: it would focus on female leaders who support philanthropic causes, and advocate for inclusion and diversity.
“I chose not to surrender,” Anne said in recounting her struggles as a trans woman. “I turned pain into power and turned life lessons into wisdom. On this stage called the Miss Universe competition, we can elevate our women to feel strong enough, good enough and qualified enough and never be objectified again,” Anne added.
Anne has already been instituting changes, such as allowing mothers and married women to enter the competition.
As she promised more changes are on the horizon, Anne promised that under her ownership, the pageant will have the “transformational leadership in order to enhance the organization’s longstanding heritage.”
On the business side, Anne outlined nine strategies aimed at raising more revenue from licensing and merchandising, selling products or services, and copyrights on goods and services such as natural mineral water and fashion products.
“Many more consumer and fashion items are on the way. Our goal is to increase the proportion of non-contest-related income to 35 to 40 percent of this business group’s revenue. This excludes future expansion of the spa, restaurant, academy, and hotel businesses,” she said.
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