London, Amsterdam, Vienna or Hong Kong - no matter where you go, if there is one name that surely appears on the itinerary, then that’s Madame Tussauds. No virtual reality tools or interactive Wiis can upstage Madame Tussauds. The reason is simple. It is the one place that creates alternate reality as you touch & get clicked with life sized wax statues of your favorite celebrities. For decades, their visit to this impressive museum, was the highlight of their trips abroad. For any Indian who hadn’t stepped out of the country, Madame Tussauds was a distant dream. Until now, 30th of November 2017, when India’s very own Madame Tussauds was launched in Delhi. The credit for it goes to Invest India.
It was during Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to Madame Tussauds that an MoU was signed for bringing the wax museum to India. World’s second largest leisure group, Merlin Entertainment was all geared up to bring this wonderland to India. But as soon as the project heads landed on Indian soil they hit an unexpected bump on the road. “Our discussions at various levels with government and many other authorities seemed far from giving. We started to question whether we should have really committed ourselves to making this decision to establish the brand in Delhi” says Anshul Jain, General Manager & Director of Merlin Entertainment India. Despite trying various channels the company failed to acquire the requisite licenses to start the museum. Their finances started depleting.Tired of running from pillar to post Anshul was on the verge of giving up when he thought of giving it one last shot. He posted a query on Make in India portal and that’s when things took a 360 degree turn.
Invest India team took the case & realized that the group was willing to invest an impressive $ 8 million for FY 2016-17 and an additional $ 77 million the next. It also meant generation of 200 employment opportunities. But this opportunity seemed to be slipping away only because of the difficulty in acquiring licenses. So without wasting a day team Invest India immediately got into action. They organized meetings with various arms of the government – different departments involved in the decision making.
As the meetings happened, the cases too got resolved. What was in a limbo for months was getting done within days. Systemic approvals like power supply, water tank, and external signage as well as from the Ministry of Tourism seemed like a walk in the park. It was because of Invest India that the doors of Madame Tussauds have finally opened for everyone in Delhi to see. With its 50 wax statues, Madame Tussauds has become another jewel in the crown of every traveller’s favorite city.