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South Indian Bank becomes title sponsor of GKSF

Posted on Oct 16, 10:26PM | UNI

Grand Kerala Shopping Festival (GKSF), the largest event of its kind in Asia, has secured title sponsorship from the South Indian Bank (SIB) for its sixth season.

One of India's leading private sector banks, SIB has extended its support to the festival to bolster the Government's efforts to transform Kerala into the country's trade and tourism hub.

Kerala Tourism Minister A P Anil Kumar exchanged a Memorandum of Understanding on the partnership with Abraham Thariyan, Executive Director of South Indian Bank (SIB) at a function here.

'SIB is taking on the role of GKSF's title sponsor for the second year in a row; their contribution to the festival has risen to Rs 4 crore this year,' Anil Kumar here said.

'GKSF this season will be a turning point; the Government's efforts are focused on bringing it to the people,' he added.

'This is also a great opportunity to showcase Kerala-made products and our state's tourism potential to the outside world.' Season 6 of GKSF starts from December 15, 2012 and concludes on January 31, 2013. Over the past five editions, the festival has successfully established itself as a key event on the tourism and retail calendar.

'GKSF will be an entirely new experience this time. We have conceptualized several new programmes to make the festival more attractive, including setting up of a 15-day Global Village in Kochi in December-January and a series of thematic exhibitions,' GKSF Director U.V. Jose said.

Buoyed by the response from the retail industry and shoppers alike, the Government has decided to scale up the festival this season with initiatives including the 15-day trade fair at Kochi, greater focus on Kerala handicrafts and indigenous products, 100pc VAT refund for shoppers from outside the state, a whopping 101 kg of gold and other high-value items as prizes.

The 48-day fiesta will take place across all 14 districts and is expected to involve nearly 10,000 retail outlets and attract 30 million customers. A record 50 lakh coupons were distributed during the last season; this time the target is to double that number.