India at Davos

Knowledge@Wharton writes how India built its brand at Davos:

In India’s case, though, another factor also was at work. Determined not to be overshadowed by other countries or business agenda items, Indian business and government leaders spent some two years and more than $4 million putting together an elaborate marketing and PR campaign — much as a multinational corporation might plan a major branding initiative — to ensure that the “India story” got prominent play and did not get lost this year amid the chatter at Davos. For a country with aspirations of growing from a regional to a global economic power, the summit offered a platform to showcase its strengths and opportunities in front of the world business and political elite.

A key part of making India more visible at Davos involved increasing the country’s bench strength at the summit. Some 110 Indian business leaders and government officials attended this year, participating in more than 200 meetings and speaking in 60 sessions. In contrast, India had 50 delegates who participated in just 60 meetings in 2005, and it had 40 delegates who took part in 10 meetings in 2004. The total Indian force at Davos this year was about 300, including some 20 print and broadcast media representatives, a dozen chefs, support staff, artisans and musicians.

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Rajesh Jain

An Entrepreneur based in Mumbai, India.