"Research the Field You Are Interested In" - Pratibha Saunshimath

Want to become a writer at Eat My News? Here is an opportunity to join the Board of Young Leaders Program by Eat My News. Click here to know more:  bit.ly/boardofyoungleaders 

1. Tell us more about your company and your journey.  

A company created out of passion, a company to help women develop confidence, it's wealth is in the number of women's lives that have been changed rather than the amount earned. The company PRATIS EVENTS started off to basically conduct "MRS INDIA KARNATAKA" a beauty pageant for married women in Karnataka. 

Till then there were two small scale pageants happening, limited to the elite society, we were the first to launch it for most common women who dared to dream different, as we gave them a platform to showcase on the state level, graduating to national "MRS INDIA" the only pageant which holds the trademark to the title, and then the journey continues to three premier international pageants.

Daring to challenge me, from a typical homemaker to achieving something different, applied for the MRS INDIA  In 2014, then totally oblivious to the knowledge of the process of a beauty pageant, I was selected basically on my attitude towards Life and positive approach. 

I neither knew ramp walk nor what happens in a pageant, just went ahead to enjoy the journey once in my life. But guess my confidence and my strength to learn things got me my first ever title as the first runner-up MRS INDIA In 2014.

Not satisfied with being a runner and now very well eloquent with the process of the beauty pageant, I competed again in 2015, and at the age of 49 become the first south Indian to win an MRS INDIA crown. 

This qualified me to compete in the ASIAN WORLD FINALS, and here I acquired another special place, became the first Kannadiga married women to hold an international title as classic MRS ASIA INTERNATIONAL PHOTOGENIC.

2. How did you come up with this idea and go about executing it?

During the journey of winning the national and international crown, I observed that there were practically no pure south Indians participating, when our women had if not better at least equal talent, what they did not have was a proper respectful platform.

Hence the idea to create a pageant in our state, resulting in the birth of my company and creating the first-ever large scale platform for married women in Karnataka with growth to national and international pageants

Planning and executing are two different affairs. Without experience, my first event in 2016 was no less a war for me. The process of how the competition would be, I had a clear idea.  But to advertise it, find the venue, get the production team, get media to notice it was an experience I learnt the very hard way. 

But once you set a mind to doing it then there is no looking back. Started connecting with people, learning new things, also things that could go wrong.. a lot of people did take me for a ride but guess those are lessons learned, but somewhere in that journey of 8 months of planning, I did meet some genuine people who have stood by me even till today, my production, website and PR  team.

Managed to find an outdoor location for the finale, was sceptical whether women would come for my audition, I was in for a surprise, first-ever audition and 60 contestants from across the state, from homemakers to corporates to actors to entrepreneurs attended the audition, the finale was grand and first-ever such big platform the media too covered it in a huge way... We had taken off. 

Past five years, even though lots of pageants have taken birth we have been the creators of this field, giving big victories for our state, our Kannadiga married women from 2016-2019 have won at least one MRS INDIA &  international title per year, Mrs India & Mrs. planet shinning start in 2016, Mrs India world-first runner-up 2016, Mrs India in 2017, MRS INDIA & Mrs. planet continental, classic MRS INDIA & classic Mrs Asia International most charming in 2018, Mrs India & MRS PLANET in 2019.

3. What has been your biggest challenge that you faced and how did you overcome that? 

The biggest challenge ever has been collecting funds to do the event. As this is not a profit-based business, and also not attractive young girls event, very difficult to attract sponsors. 2016 the first edition was the most impossible venture. 

All plans in place, except funds. Absolutely no sponsor ready to pay the amount, they want their products to get coverage but not ready to open their wallets. The first-ever event basically went through as family and friends came together to lend some money, PR, the production team worked at the most basic cost. If not for all of these people I would never have completed my first event.

This journey taught me how to manage funds the right way, so as to give the best to our contestants and our audience

4. What do you think are the most important qualities of a successful entrepreneur?  

Daring to dream, working towards making that dream come true,  studying all possible paths, and  systematically planning    out the execution in a proper manner, reduces the risk of failure.   Yet need to have the  willingness to take   calculated risks, be ready to face failures.  Let these failures be a learning experience to get better at it.

5. What are your tips for the first time and aspiring entrepreneurs? 

Always do your homework, study the field you are entering into, who are your competitors, how has the particular business been done before, then what new are you planning and the chances of you doing better. 

- Pratibha Saunshimath, Director MRS INDIA KARNATAKA

- Interviewed by Khushi Badrinath

- Edited by Shilpy Sharan

Post a comment