MANILA, Philippines – Anne Jakrajutatip assured pageant fans that the Miss Universe Organization “will continue to operate as planned” amidst the financial situation of her company JKN Global Group.
“Miss Universe Organization, which is only one of our many business lines, is completely clean,” the Thai entrepreneur said in a statement posted on her Instagram on Saturday, November 10.
She added that the Miss Universe Organization remains to be her “first priority in life no matter how joyful or painful it’s gonna be.”
Her statement came days after it was reported that her Thai media company JKN Global Group has filed for business rehabilitation.
According to the Bangkok Post, the media company has petitioned to “adjust interest rates on existing debt and extend its debt repayment method.” Additionally, the report also mentioned that JKN Global Group had already delayed some payments to repay some of its bonds due to “global and domestic economic challenges.”
In her statement, Jakrajutatip explained that this move is a way for the JKN Global Group to “refinance [their] debt and rehabilitate [their] business.”
“This is a necessary step in our growth to ensure that our debt is repaid and the company remains financially healthy,” she added.
In October 2022, JKN Global Group acquired the Miss Universe Organization for $20 million. The company also owns Miss USA and Miss Teen USA.
Since the situation with JKN Global Group broke just weeks before the Miss Universe 2023 coronation night, pageant fans are worried as to how it will affect the pageant.
But Jakrajutatip emphasized that she will “sacrifice and do everything for the great success of our Universe.”
“Our universe must go on, must be great and must stay on top as the legendary Beauty Olympics in the World,” she said.
The Miss Universe 2023 coronation night is set for November 18 (morning of November 19 in the Philippines). Meanwhile, the preliminary competition and the national costume show are set for November 15 and 16, respectively.
Over 90 delegates from all over the world are participating in the competition. The 2023 edition will also be the first global edition that allows married women and mothers to compete.
USA’s R’Bonney Gabriel will be crowning her successor.
The Philippines’ Michelle Dee is competing in hopes of winning the country’s fifth Miss Universe crown, with its recent winners being Pia Wurtzbach in 2015 and Catriona Gray in 2018. – Rappler.com