Tsuneo Watanabe, Chairman and Editor-in-Chief, The Yomiuri Shimbun Holdings, will be honoured as the Media Person of the Year at the Cannes Lions International Advertising Festival (IAF) 2007. This award pays a tribute to a prominent personality from the worldwide media industry. The award is given in recognition of Watanabe’s leadership of The Yomiuri Shimbun Holdings, which operates across a range of media including newspaper, magazine and book publishing, television, radio, film and video production, travel agencies, business school and sports.
Terry Savage, Executive Chairman, Cannes Lions IAF 2007 said, “Historically, Cannes Lions has looked West when making this most important and prestigious award. This year, we are looking East. In recognising Tsuneo Wantanabe, we are honouring a leader who has contributed to building one of the greatest media organisations in the world, a leader who has the responsibility of publishing the largest circulated newspaper in the world. A leader who has not just embraced press, but also TV, radio and a range of other media and business ventures.”
Watanabe joined The Yomiuri Shimbun in 1950 and was a political writer from 1952 to 1968. After over three years as Chief of the Washington Bureau, two and a half years as Commentary and Analysis Editor, and two years as Associate Managing Editor and Political Editor, he was appointed Deputy MD in 1977. He was appointed the Chairman of the Editorial Board in 1979. In 1980 he became MD and then Senior Executive Director in 1983 before taking on the role of Editor-in-Chief in 1985. In 1987 he moved on to be Senior Vice President followed by President, Editor-in-Chief of The Yomiuri Shimbun in 1991. Watanabe was appointed President and Editor-in-Chief of The Yomiuri Shimbun Holdings in 2002 before finally taking on the role of Chairman of the Board, Editor-in-Chief in 2004.