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Delhi on the lookout for the next creative young gun

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Delhi on the lookout for the next creative young gun

It was rightly said by Paul Polman, CEO, Unilever, “We need to shift our thinking to New Delhi and not New York”. Miles Young, CEO, Ogilvy Worldwide also said that New Delhi is the next destination. Everyone is eyeing the upcoming Madison Avenue and Portfolio Night happening in Delhi for the first time reinstates this belief.

Speed dating the best of creative minds and getting into the world of advertising in just one night is no more a far cry. Being hosted in New Delhi by Leo Burnett, Portfolio Night brings an exciting opportunity for young advertising copywriters, art directors, designers to meet and share their portfolios with some of the most senior and experienced creative people from Indian advertising in a fast-paced evening. Since its debut in 2000, Mumbai has been one of most popular Portfolio Night cities in the world. Participants would travel from all points of India just to attend the event. Now, it brings an immense opportunity for the young creative minds in Delhi to showcase their brilliance through the event.

Sainath Saraban, Executive Creative Director, Leo Burnett said, “We are very proud to host the event. Young talent very rarely gets the opportunity to meet the legends of the industry. It is a perfect bridge which brings young talent in direct conversation with great minds behind some of the most memorable campaigns. It will be transfer of experience, wisdom and insights.”

“Delhi has been a creative hub for more than a decade. Mumbai gets a larger part of the limelight because the industry is centralised over there. Delhi has its own advertising entity which has its own set of clients and agencies doing some very good work. The size of the advertising industry in Delhi is huge and fresh creative talent is coming in every year. Not everyone wants to go to Mumbai to attend the Portfolio Night. It brings a great opportunity for people from Delhi and nearby places to get expert guidance on their work through the event,” he added.

Traditionally, the advertising industry has been led by agencies and clients based in Mumbai, but there have been a sea change in the last five – six years. With the real estate boom, some of the finest clients such as Hero, LG, Samsung, Airtel, Nokia, Coke, Dabur and Pepsi, have started setting up shop in Gurgaon.

Ajay Gahlaut, Executive Creative Director at Ogilvy & Mather said, “I think it’s a fabulous thing happening in Delhi and it’s a great way to discover talent in the city. The youngsters get a chance to meet all the creative directors in one go rather than meeting the creative directors individually, which is not always easy. For the creative directors, it’s an excellent event to meet young talent and identify the good works of the young people. Delhi was always a creative destination to be, with a very large advertising market and the biggest offices. It’s an opportunity to showcase work without travelling. For a creative in Delhi to go to Mumbai to showcase his/her work always becomes a problem, hence, it is a great opportunity for them.”

“I think it should happen all around the country because there is talent everywhere and they should all get a chance to showcase their work,” he added.

In the 11 years since its inception, Portfolio Night has grown to a global event, reaching creative hubs in every continent with focus on identifying the next big hero.

“It is a great opportunity for kids in Delhi. And it also underlines the criticality of ensuring that Delhi talent is groomed and Delhi talent is given a boost. This is 10 years too late. But at least it’s happened. Fabulous that Leo Burnett is doing this and I am thankful to them on behalf of the youngsters,” said Prathap Suthan, Managing Partner, Bang in the Middle.

Delhi is now a fertile playing ground with a lot of juicier and beautiful brands, and socially Delhi is a more aggressive and pushy city; hence, it is logical to host the Portfolio Night in the city.

Satbir Singh, Managing Partner and Chief Creative Officer, Havas Worldwide India said, “Portfolio Night in Delhi will help by giving youngsters a chance to meet and having their work critiqued by seniors. Delhi has always been a creative hub. Some of the biggest advertising names started their careers in Delhi. Nearly all Indian agencies are headquartered in Mumbai. That apart, ad film makers are in Mumbai as Bollywood and film making ecosystem is there. Which is why, all creative people have so far been moving to Mumbai as they rise in the system. It'll still be a long while before that changes but it will happen as clients are choosing Delhi for marketing offices.”

The perception is slowly changing and the industry has started acknowledging the importance of Delhi. Hosting the prestigious Portfolio Night in Delhi makes us believe that the advertisement industry has realised the potential of the city emerging into a new world of ideas, innovation and creativity.

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