Rift in the advertising fraternity has come out in the open. Lowe, which had decided to enter Abby earlier, has decided not be part of the Advertising Agencies Association of India (AAAI) or the former.
"The decision to enter the Abbys earlier, was to only to bring the advertising fraternity together. And since the industry is split between the two awards, we have decided to abstain for both the awards this year," said R Balakrishnan, executive creative director, Lowe.
The agency had decided to enter one of the awards thinking that it has full participation from the industry.
But it had to review its decision after agencies like O&M stayed with the Abbys and McCann Erickson, Leo Burnett, Saatchi & Saatchi and Ambience taking sides with the AAAI Awards.
Santosh Desai, president, McCann Erickson stated that they would be entering the AAAI Awards. "Our decision not to enter the Abbys, was only pertaining to this year and is not a thumb rule the agency is following."
When queried on what expectations McCann as agency had, Desai candidly stated," We want a more transparent process of judging creative and would like to see evidence of that."
Endorsing Desai's view, K V Sridhar, national creative director, Leo Burnett said that they would be participating in the AAAI awards but was hoping that the Abbys makes their judging process more transparent.
Sridhar added: "The entire creative community is trying to come together to bring both the institutions to host a single award. Or, both awards must stand for different things and must not be a replication of each other."
Sridhar also pointed out that as an agency they were more comfortable with the way AAAI conducted their awards.