Advertising agency Lowe Lintas has announced its decision to participate in this year's Abby Awards, the annual advertising awards given away by Ad Club Bombay. The move marks the agency's return to this particular awards platform after a four-year hiatus.
Lowe Lintas has stayed away from these awards since '01, when its executive creative director R Balakrishnan (Balki) walked out alleging that a couple of jury members were influencing the award jury against one of the agency's entries.
Ever since, Lowe Lintas has been participating only at the Triple A Awards, constituted by the Advertising Agencies Association of India (AAAI). The move will also see Lowe Lintas competing with arch-rival O&M India - which has virtually monopolised the Abby Awards, regularly claiming the Agency of the Year title.
“Lowe is really not fully prepared for entering its work at the Abby's, but the purpose here is to send out a signal to the entire industry,” said Mr Balakrishnan.
“We don't want to be a part of a system that divides the industry. We might have our differences, but we must have a common platform for awards. The idea is to pull everyone together.” Mr Balakrishnan added that Abby organisers have addressed his agency's grouse against the judging procedure.
Welcoming the Lowe Lintas decision, Piyush Pandey, executive chairman & national creative director, O&M India, said: “Balki's decision is the most welcome one in a long while. As an industry, we are getting hugely fragmented.
There has to be an end to this if we are serious about competing on a global level. Hopefully, this will act as an impetus and get all agencies together.” The Ad Club Bombay, in the meanwhile, has extended the deadline for sending in entries by four days.