Thai businesswoman Anne Jakrajutatip buys Miss Universe pageant for $20 mln

BANGKOK, Oct 26 – A Thai celebrity media tycoon and transgender rights advocate has bought the Miss Universe Organization for $20 million, marking the first time the beauty pageant organizer will be owned by a woman, her company said on Wednesday.

Life is your garden. What are you planting? 🌲🌿🍀 ชีวิตเสมือนการปลุกต้นไม้….ลงทุนกับเรื่องอะไรก็มีผลผลิตงอกเงยออกมาแบบนั้น! #แอนจักรพงษ์ #annejakrajutatip

Jakapong “Anne” Jakrajutatip, CEO and biggest shareholder of JKN Global Group Pcl (JKN) (JKN.BK), is a celebrity in Thailand, starring in local versions of reality shows Project Runway and Shark Tank.Advertisement · Scroll to continueReport an ad

She has been outspoken about her experience as a transgender woman and also set up the Life Inspired For Thailand Foundation to advocate for the rights to dignity and opportunities for transgender people.

The acquisition is “a strong, strategic addition to our portfolio,” said Jakapong, adding that Miss Universe, with its content, licensing and merchandising opportunities, plans to expand in Asia.

JKN produces its own shows and distributes content in Thailand from abroad including documentaries and Bollywood dramas. Its shares jumped nearly 10% in early trade on Wednesday.

The annual beauty contest run by the Miss Universe Organization, which was co-owned by Donald Trump between 1996 and 2002, is broadcast in 165 countries and has been running for 71 years.

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