WeAreTheCity India Makes it Happen! By Caroline Graham, WATC India Editor-in-Chief



The cream of Mumbai’s professional set turned out on Monday, 16 March 2015 to celebrate International Women’s Day with WeAreTheCity India.

The event theme, ‘Make it Happen’ lived up to expectations as inspirational speakers, fashion models and WATC UK and India committee members took to the stage at the JW Marriott Hotel, Mumbai.

First up as key note speaker, was Apurva Purohit, CEO of Radio City and author of ‘Lady, You’re Not a Man’. Giving a thought-provoking, motivational talk, laced with humour, Apurva’s advice to ‘make it happen’ was clear – Accept, Adapt, Achieve! She also advised the audience to, ‘Own success when you achieve it’. After her inspiring speech, the audience was clearly delighted to receive a free copy of her best-selling book, courtesy of Barclays.

Next followed a fast-paced, dynamic, interactive panel debate, hosted by WATC’s Founder, Vanessa Vallely, who had travelled from London for the event. The panellists – all experts and successful women in their chosen fields – spoke candidly about their career journeys and spoke of the challenges they have faced along the way in their professional and personal lives.

WeAreTheCity India would like to thank our key note speaker, Apurva Purohit, and the panellists below for providing our guests with such valuable advice and inspiration.

  • Shalini Naagar – Head of Human Resources and Sustainability, India and South Asia, Marks and Spencer
  • Marita Maier – Head of French and German Business Centres India, EY
  • Khushnooma Kapadia – Director of Marketing Communications, Marriott Hotels
  • Roohi Biswas – Head of HR, Jean-Claude Biguine – Paris, India
  • Dr Sahar Bhaloo – Clinical Psychologist for Social Change

Following a short period of networking over cocktails and canapés, the evening event climaxed with a glittering fashion show hosted by Marks and Spencer. 10 models, styled by Jean-Claude Biguine, walked down a fabulous cat-walk created by Marks and Spencer with the help of the Marriott team. Marks and Spencer used the event to showcase a number of outfits from its new Spring range including a dramatic black and white collection followed by models wearing bold spring colours. The showstopper model of the evening was the fabulous Elli Evram who brought the house down!

WeAreTheCity India Co-Chairs, Jo Gaglani and Dimple Luniya coordinated the event, welcoming speakers, models, sponsors and WATC members alike.

Jo Gaglani said: “We put in a lot of effort to ensure we produced our best event yet for our WeAreTheCity India members. We absolutely Made it Happen! I can’t thank enough the teams from JW Marriott Mumbai, Marks and Spencer and Jean-Claude Biguine – Paris, India, for their commitment and support of this event, and for the countless hours they spent with us ensuring that the day went off without a hitch.”

Dimple Luniya said: “This was another great opportunity for WATC India members to connect, be inspired, hear from amazing women and have some fun. It was a perfect way to celebrate not only International Women’s Day, but WeAreTheCity India’s first birthday. We look forward to many more events to come!”

Vanessa Vallely, CEO and Founder of WeAreTheCity, said: “What an amazing event! WeAreTheCity India continues to go from strength to strength. I am sure this is the first in a long line of future events that will bring women professionals and entrepreneurs together to learn and connect. I cannot thank our co-chairs, committee members and sponsors enough for their unwavering support in making this event happen in such a spectacular way for our members in India!”

WeAreTheCity India would like to extend our thanks to our sponsors: Marriott Hotels, Barclays, EY, Marks and Spencer and Jean-Claude Biguine – Paris, India

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