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CNBC TV 18, ICICI Bank announce Emerging India Awards for SMEs

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MUMBAI: CNBC TV-18 and ICICI Bank today announced the launch of the Emerging India Awards, which is a pioneering initiative to recognise the contribution of Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) to the growth of the Indian economy.

The Emerging India Awards have been instituted to recognise the best sustainable value creators among SMEs in the country and SMEs having a net worth of a maximum of Rs 500 million are eligible for entry into the awards.

ICICI Bank and CNBC-TV18 have tied up with CRISIL (India's premier credit rating agency) for designing and executing the evaluation process for the awards. Tata Indicom Enterprise business unit and AFL will also lend it's support to this initiative.

The awards would be given away on a countrywide basis targeting ten different categories:

-Auto, Engineering and Ancillaries

-Pharma and Chemicals

-FMCG, Food and Agri-Business

-Gems and Jewellery

-Textiles and Apparel

-Information Technology, Communications and Entertainment (ICE), IT enabled Services (ITeS)

-Infrastructure

-Travel and Tourism

-Retail Trade

-Commodity Traders and others

SMEs can send in their entries from 8 December and the last date for sending in entries for the awards is 7 January, 2005. The evaluation process will be completed within three months, which will culminate into an awards ceremony in March 2005. The entry form can be collected from any of the ICICI Bank branches or can be submitted online by visiting the website www.moneycontol.com/cnbc/emergingindia.

Announcing the awards initiative, ICICI Bank retail business head V Vaidyanathan said, "ICICI Bank and CNBC-TV18 have instituted these awards as a part of their overall approach to recognize the immense contribution made by SMEs towards the economic and social development of the country. Today, over 95 per cent of all industrial units are SMEs. It accounts for 40 per cent of all industrial output and 35 per cent of exports. SMEs provide 45 per cent of the industrial employment and are the prime driver of new employment. We have seen strong growth and value creation in this segment, and felt that bringing out these achievements on a public platform would not only provide this segment the due recognition but will also provide inspiration to many other players in this segment to do even better and contribute to the Indian economy."

CNBC-TV18 CEO Haresh Chawla said, "Small and medium enterprises form the backbone and are the primary growth engine in most world economies and India is no exception. The government of India has taken various measures to improve the SME sector that is currently facing several challenges due to the growth of the knowledge-based economy, explosion of e-business, globalization and demanding customers. Realising the potential of the SME sector, the Emerging India Awards ceremony aims to felicitate the efforts of the most deserving SMEs in each category thus bringing them into the limelight, while at the same time providing them with a platform to voice their opinions."

CRISIL Limited executive director and chief rating officer Roopa Kudva, on the other hand said, "The Emerging India Awards are a pioneering initiative to recognise and honour the 'Best Sustainable Value Creators' in the SME sector. CRISIL will use its significant expertise in the SME domain to identify the leaders in SME sub segments. The awards will establish benchmarks for others to emulate and foster best practices among the SMEs. CRISIL offers bouquet of services to this sector including SME grading, certification services, models for assessing credit risk in SMEs and research reports on SME clusters."

The Emerging India Awards invites entries from those SMEs that have started operations before 1 January 2000. These will be shortlisted to 25 per category based on value creation parameters of financial data provided by the entities. A second round of screening will follow where CRISIL will review the Financial Statements of the chosen entities to shortlist three entries per category. Each of the three shortlisted entities per category will have to make a final round of offsite presentations about their respective businesses. Awards will be presented to winners as well as runners-up in each category.

As a part of this initiative, ICICI Bank and CNBC TV-18 had also organised forums in Mumbai, Delhi, Chennai, Bangalore and Ahmedabad to discuss the various issues and opportunities for SMEs in various industries.

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