MediaCom bets on #WingsToFly, Gillette Bachelor of Shaving for Cannes 2018

Niti Kumar, Managing Partner, MediaCom, shares her thoughts on what makes these campaigns the best contenders

e4m by exchange4media Staff
Published: May 28, 2018 8:53 AM  | 5 min read

MediaCom is nominating two campaigns to the Cannes Lions Festival of Creativity this year. The agency is betting big on #WingsToFly for Whisper and Gillette Bachelor of Shaving for Gillette. Niti Kumar, Managing Partner, MediaCom, shared with exchange4media her thoughts on what makes these campaigns the best contenders for Cannes 2018.

Whisper #WingsToFly

More than 100 million adolescent girls (aged 12-14) in India are at the risk of dropping out of school because of the stigma surrounding menstruation. With minimal dialogue about menstrual hygiene either at school or home due to the taboo nature of the subject, this is a shame-filled reality they quietly endure. When a girl misses school due to period, it puts her behind her male classmates by more than half a year (200 days). And that’s the magnitude of this setback.

Being the backbone of her family, an Indian mother is willing to provide her daughter education and nutrition. To remedy this problem, Whisper launched WingsToFly campaign and decided to convince the mother. The objective was to spread awareness about menstrual hygiene and educate Indian women about the importance of using sanitary pads. 

They set out to make mothers aware of the stakes involved - the everlasting impact of missing school during period on her daughter’s progress and future. They created WingsToFly - India’s largest menstruation camp- to break all barriers that hold a woman back from using a sanitary pad for herself or for her daughter.  The camp was a one-stop solution/answer to all her worries and apprehensions surrounding periods. They started with understanding the influencer, not the consumer. For the drive, they also joined hands with health experts, gynaecologists and influencers. Product counselors also demonstrated how to use a pad, showcasing its benefits over cloth.

They engaged with more than 3 million women through the initiative; one-on-one with 10,500 mothers through the camps across Maharashtra. Never had a female care brand seen such a huge participation in one state. Whisper has now set out to safeguard lives and futures of 10+ million girls in 2018 across three more states.

Kumar believes that this one is a strong contender at Cannes due to its deep-rooted cultural insight into Indian women’s lives and the solutions it provides. It has a perfect balance of a social message unpinned by a strong brand benefit. 

“Whisper Wings to Fly addresses a very real social stigma that young Indian girls face today – compromising on education and their personal development as a result of their mothers not knowing enough or choosing not to spend on sanitary napkins. The campaign was very effective from both a business and a media lens,” she reasons.

Gillette Bachelor of Shaving

India is the fastest growing economy in the world consisting of 70 per cent rural population. But, merely 15 per cent of them are part of India’s workforce. Low employability rate and repeated rejection in job interviews after graduation have led young Indian rural graduates to confidence deficit, limiting India’s growth story. 

The stakes are even higher with more than 30 million college graduates attempting to enter India’s job market every year. The competition is massive. And ironically, even though graduates from impoverished, rural areas often do disproportionately better than other graduates in their university tests, the job hunt is often unsuccessful for rural graduates. They are unaware of professional possibilities and often lack the critical social skills like etiquette, personal grooming and interview ability to gain their first job.

Gillette wanted to improve employability and instil confidence in rural youth’s life. For this, it created the world’s largest college outreach programme. The Gillette Bachelor of Shaving presented workshops in resume writing, career counselling, grooming and interview skills, giving rural young men the fighting chance to build confidence, develop social skills and try Gillette Guard razor. The aim was to inculcate Gillette’s values of confidence & importance of grooming in rural youth’s life and also create awareness for Gillette Guard, the specially designed razor for rural India. 

The Gillette Bachelor of Shaving prepares rural Indian graduates for life. It has been designed to improve the employability of rural Indian graduates and give them a chance to succeed. Improving the employability of rural youth was a critical, long-term growth opportunity for Gillette. Local celebrity engagement helped in enhancing the drive's reach and generating awareness and massive earned media coverage.

In terms of impact, the lives of hundreds of thousands of students were touched and improved. The programme is the start of giving an entire generation a chance they otherwise could have missed. 

Kumar says, “While Indian youths are among the brightest in the world, college graduates from small towns and rural areas are not able to land plum jobs due to lack of grooming, personal etiquette and interview-skills. For Gillette, enabling the youth to become more employable is a perfect platform to make the brand more relevant among key consumers. This campaign earns points for creating a platform that makes a true difference to the lives of consumers as well as for the massive earned media and goodwill that it generated for the brand.”

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The Indian advertising industry is being taken more seriously now than ever: Aditya Kanthy

The CEO and MD of DDB Mudra Group, who is one of the 13 Indian jury members at Cannes Lions this year, speaks to e4m about his excitement and expectations from the festival of creativity

By Tanzila Shaikh | May 5, 2023 8:56 AM   |   3 min read


Last year’s performance at Cannes Lions, the best in a decade, has led the Indian industry to be taken more seriously than ever, says Aditya Kanthy, CEO and MD, DDB Mudra Group. He is one of the 13 Indian jury members for the festival of creativity this year and will be judging the Creative Effectiveness Lions category.

In a conversation with e4m, Kanthy spoke about why the Indian advertising industry is being recognised by the world, what according to him constitutes a winning campaign, and much more.


Cannes has 13 creative leaders as jurors. How is the world perceiving the Indian advertising industry?

With our performance at Cannes over the last decade, there is no doubt that the Indian industry is being taken more seriously than ever. It is now expected that we will help raise the standard for the industry at large. This is true for us as a part of the global DDB network as well, with our consistent wins at Cannes over the last few years. 

Given the scale at which campaigns operate in India, it is truly exciting to see the power of creativity at work. As one of the world’s few large growing economies, the Indian market is a particularly interesting one in underlining the relationship between creativity and growth.

How has the definition of creativity changed over time?

In the age of AI-driven marketing solutions, mixed reality, hyper-personalisation, performance marketing and a whole suite of emerging technologies and media avenues at our disposal, the one thing that remains unchanged is the definition of creativity. It is still very much about doing things in a different yet relevant way, helping brands get noticed and moving people.

The genius Bill Bernbach said it beautifully, “It took millions of years for man’s instincts to develop. It will take millions more for them to even vary. It is fashionable to talk about changing man. A communicator must be concerned with the unchanging man, with his obsessive drive to survive, to be admired, to succeed, to love, to take care of his own.” Hear, hear!

What constitutes a winning campaign? What criteria will you keep in mind?

In the category that I am judging, it is very clear – demonstrable, disproportionate, business/brand/behavioural (ideally all three) outcomes.

Have the judging parameters changed over time, or from last year?

There is a clear shift towards recognising work that seriously impacts business and culture at scale.

Will parameters like inclusivity and diversity gain brownie points, especially when many brands have been accused of woke washing?

There is no question of brownie points, whether we are serious about it or not. If we are, it will come through in the work. There is no choice in the matter. Work that does not respect inclusivity and diversity has no place in business and culture.

What are you expecting from this year's Cannes?

Considering that I am judging at Cannes for the first time, I am eager to experience a new facet of the festival. With my background as a strategist, I look forward to the conversations that I will have with the other members of the Creative Effectiveness Jury talking about and evaluating the best work in the world.

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Cannes Lions: Here’s what is sending for the festival of creativity

We take a look at the entries - Swiggy’s ‘Why is this a Swiggy ad’ and Cleartrip’s Code Print campaign

By exchange4media Staff | May 3, 2023 9:24 AM   |   3 min read

This year, the Indian advertising industry is all geared up to meet the expectations around Cannes Lions after last year’s resounding success. Continuing with our series on the entries from India this year, we look at’s two entries at Cannes Lions 2023.

We reached out to PG Aditya, Co-founder at, to know more about their entries for the festival. Talented is sending two entries -  Swiggy’s Why is this a Swiggy ad and Cleartrip’s Code Print Ad. It should be noted that PG Aditya’s work at dentsu Creative got the agency the ‘Agency of the Year’ award with Unfiltered History bagging many more.

Why is this a Swiggy ad 

Last year in October, Swiggy, the food delivery app, posted a retro-futuristic style ad with many iconic elements like the Gulab Jamun uncle, Instamart paper bag, Bisleri 5-litre bottles, and the dubious satellite image forward of India lit up during Diwali in it. 

Netizens had a rollicking time on Swiggy's social media pages after the food delivery app posted a cryptic image with the question "Why is this a Swiggy ad?" The internet obliged and has been commenting on Swiggy's Twitter thread and Instagram comment section. After all, there's a Rs 1 lakh Swiggy money reward for the craziest theory.

Netizens were asked to come up with the craziest answers to the question with the hashtag #WITASA (Why is it a Swiggy ad?). The campaign website ( is designed to help fans of the campaign explore each element in extreme detail and unlock hidden clues that will help them crack the mystery.

Speaking on the process, Teresa Sebastian, creative at Talented, said, “It was the most enjoyable creative process, with relentless hours of making plots and sub-plots and weaving a story that you’d hear only once in your lifetime. The inspiration was 50s illustration style and sci-fi comics and movie posters (think Other Worlds, Space Man, At the Earth's Core). It was a conscious choice to make the visual an illustration to break the monotony and also to fully justify the madness we had in our minds. And of course, it took a village. Right from a fantastic client team, who was the secret sauce in making this campaign come alive at its creative best, to my colleagues at T6D and to partners like illustrator Nishikant Palande and website partner Kalpit Dwivedi.”

Cleartrip’s Code Print Ad

To encourage people to think outside of their city simply by making smarter decisions during this sale season, Cleartrip launched a print advertisement designed by in association with Web Dimension. 

This advertisement from Cleartrip attempts to make people rethink their spending strategy and encourages them to tour the world instead of buying unneeded goods at a time when the newspapers are flooded with a torrent of sale season ads screaming hefty discounts and price reduction.

The other standout feature was a website called, where users may scan any sale advertisement seen on any page of a newspaper (or elsewhere) to access a travel deal from Cleartrip for the same price. When the page is scanned, offers for domestic and international travel, 3-star hotels, and upscale accommodations appear.

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Cannes Lions: Amrita Randhawa nominated Jury President - Creative Strategy

Mahesan M., Executive Creative Director, Brand Experience & Activation, Cheil Worldwide, added to Shortlist Jury

By exchange4media Staff | Apr 29, 2023 7:50 AM   |   1 min read

Cannes Lions

Cannes Lions has announced its 2023 Shortlisting Jury with 197 experts from the creative industries.

Amrita Randhawa, CEO of Publicis Groupe, Singapore & Southeast Asia, has been nominated jury president for Creative Strategy.

Mahesan M., Executive Creative Director, Brand Experience & Activation, Cheil Worldwide has also been added to the Shortlist Jury, which brings the total number of Indians in this category to 8.

The Indian names in the shortlist jury include:

  • Shekhar Badve, Founder Director, LOKUS DESIGN PVT. LTD.
  • Sumeli Chatterjee, Sr. Director, Integrated Marketing & Experiences (IMX), THE COCA-COLA COMPANY, INDIA & SOUTH WEST ASIA
  • Binaifer Dulani, Creative and Founding Member, Talented, India
  • Ronak Chugh, Director, Rooted Films, India
  • Mahesh Ambaliya, Creative Director, VMLY&R, India
  • Moumita Pal, Senior Creative Director, FCB, India
  • Jini Mathai, Regional Head-Southeast Asia, Havas Health and You, Southeast Asia
  • Mahesan M., Executive Creative Director, Brand Experience & Activation, Cheil Worldwide

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Cannes Lions: Filmmaker Spike Lee is Festival’s first Creative Maker of the Year

The Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity celebrates its 70th edition with this honorary award celebrating the creative maker

By exchange4media Staff | Apr 28, 2023 9:09 AM   |   3 min read

Cannes Lions

Cannes Lions has announced the first honorary Creative Maker of the Year award as part of the 70th edition of the International Festival of Creativity. The inaugural award will be presented at the Festival to legendary filmmaker, screenwriter, actor and producer, Spike Lee.

When the Festival was founded in 1954, the original Lion was created to recognise world-class creativity in TV and Cinema advertising. Seventy years later, this award honours that heritage, and will celebrate an increasingly broad mix of creative makers who will bring ideas to life in to the future.

Simon Cook, CEO of LIONS, said: “We know that world-class creative work takes so much to deliver. Since its inception, Cannes Lions has always been about the makers and the creatives who walk through walls to realise their vision. Going forward, this award will honour creative makers, from any discipline who are inspirational beacons for our whole community. In our 70th year, it seems appropriate that the inaugural Creative Maker award should go to a director. It’s a huge honour to present Spike Lee, one of the most influential figures in contemporary cinema and culture, with this accolade live at the Festival. Spike embodies the spirit of this award as a maker that strives to make creative stories and show the world what they can only see in their imaginations.”

The award, supported by Black At Cannes, honours multi-Lion award winner Spike Lee, whose unparalleled body of work has made an indelible mark on filmmaking, television and the creative industry. And as the founder of his own creative agency, Spike DDB, his mission has been to help brands change the world by keeping pace with culture.

Commenting on receiving the award, Spike Lee, filmmaker, screenwriter, actor, and producer, said: “I’m honored to accept the inaugural Cannes Lions Creative Maker of the Year award for my contributions to the advertising industry, but a reminder: “We keep having these obstacles, these hurdles, we have to face and we have to keep knocking them down”. I said this in 1997 and still say it today.”

Lee’s career spans over 30 years, receiving five Oscar nominations for: Do The Right Thing, 4 Little Girls, and the critically acclaimed hit feature BlacKkKlansman that he co-wrote and directed, going on to win the Oscar for Best Adapted Screenplay in 2018. He was also awarded an Honorary Oscar in 2015 for his lifetime achievement and contributions to the state of motion picture arts and sciences.

Lee is also known for his legendary Jordan Brand TV commercials and marketing campaigns with Michael Jordan. Commenting on the award and Spike's legacy as a world-renowned creative maker, Shannon Watkins, Chief Marketing Officer at Jordan Brand, said: "Spike’s focus on telling stories, combined with his ability to capture the pulse of Black Culture sets him apart from others in the industry. Spike created iconic memories, and helped to build the soul of what Jordan Brand represents. Maybe the shoes on our feet wouldn’t make us jump as high as MJ, but just for a moment, we might feel the confidence and self-belief of the greatest to ever do it.”

Peter O Ukhurebor, Founder of Black At Cannes, commented: "Spike Lee is a creative role model who has paved the way for so many black creatives. The Creative Maker of the Year award inspires us to continue spearheading the creation of pathways for diverse voices and promoting inclusion and equity across the global creative industry. We applaud the partnership."

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Inside DDB Mudra’s Cannes Lions entries: BotHard and The Hire

Rahul Mathew, Chief Creative Officer, DDB Mudra Group, takes us through the two entries that they are sending for the festival and why have they chosen the same

By Tanzila Shaikh | Apr 26, 2023 12:48 PM   |   4 min read


This year, the Indian advertising industry is all geared up to meet the expectations around Cannes Lions after last year’s resounding success. Continuing with our series on the entries from India this year, we look at DDB Mudra’s two of their five entries.

Three of the entries that the agency is sending are - McDonald's 'EatQual' and Stayfree's 'It's just a period' in the category of creative effectiveness. They will also be sending an entry in the in the newly formed gaming category - BGMI's 'Machine-gun Mouth'.

Here, Rahul Mathew, Chief Creative Officer, DDB Mudra Group, takes us through two of the other entries.

MTV India’s BotHard

The campaign will be sent for four categories - Direct, Entertainment Lion for Music, Radio & Audio, Social & Influencer. The agency created BotHard, an AI-based rapper, to introduce rap to the youth in a country where film music dominates. It is built on the GPT3 platform and can imitate the rhyme schemes and patterns used by various rappers. So, it can generate lyrics that match the style of the chosen rapper for any word you input as a prompt. The generated lyrics are then converted into vocals using a text-to-speech engine and added to a rap beat. While the vocal track is being created, a lyric video is also generated parallelly to produce the final track.

On the brief, Matthew said, “The idea was to build an interactive way to allow participation and involve people to experience the rap scene themselves. The success of BotHard drove conversations beyond the platform and attracted scores of curious audiences, resulting in unprecedented organic traction. The campaign served as an example of MTV India's constantly evolving repertoire of tech-first consumer experiences.”

An example of BotHard -

Speaking about the challenges they faced, Matthew said, “The challenges while creating BotHard AI rapper were to balance authenticity while appealing to a broader audience. It meant striking a balance between not alienating the masses by being too niche, but also not being too watered-down that people who influence the category don't find it worth their time.”

The campaign was effective in achieving its strategic objective of taking hip-hop to the masses since its innovations were enjoyed by the genre's occasional listeners, who then went on to consume the content and champion it. This campaign resulted in the creation of over 350K rap videos. MTV Hustle Season 2.0 experienced a 9-fold increase in digital views from Season 1, with over 2 billion views.

Indeed - The Hire


The campaign will be entered into two categories - Creative B2B and Film. The campaign is a set of three films talking about the wrong hires and how Indeed is fixing that problem. Speaking about the brief, Matthew said, “Having entered India in 2017, Indeed was a relatively new player in a cluttered category and suffered from a lack of awareness. To create differentiation and build awareness, we decided to talk to an audience that went largely unnoticed: recruiters, particularly those within the SMB sector, which is one of the fastest-growing segments in the country and is characterized by inefficient and informal hiring processes.”

The campaign reached 55 million unique audiences, creating over 130 million impressions. The average click-through rate for the campaign assets ranged between 0.43% to 0.65%, significantly higher than the usual range of 0.04% to 0.08%. In the post-campaign Q4 period, the Indeed app on average witnessed over 2.9 million downloads monthly, which was 2x more than Q1.

“For the first time in the brand’s history in India, Indeed secured an app installation growth rate surpassing that of our competing brands who were more established in the Indian market than us,” he said.

Matthew also said that they have always been very picky about the work that they send to the festival. Cannes Lion 2023 is set to happen from June 19-23.

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Cannes Lions 2023: 7 Indians on shortlisting jury

197 experts from across 58 markets will be shortlisting world-class creative work

By exchange4media Staff | Apr 25, 2023 6:38 PM   |   10 min read

Cannes Lions

Cannes Lions has announced a line-up of global experts from across the creative industries who will shortlist world-class creative work. The shortlisted work will go on to be judged, awarded and celebrated on the global stage during the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity, running from 19-23 June 2023. 

The 7 Indians on the jury are:

  • Binaifer Dulani, Creative and Founding Member, Talented, India
  • Moumita Pal, Senior Creative Director, FCB, India
  • Shekhar Badve, Founder Director, Lokus Design Pvt. Ltd., India
  • Ronak Chugh, Director, Rooted Films, India
  • Mahesh Ambaliya, Creative Director, VMLY&R, India
  • Sumeli Chatterjee, Sr. Director, Integrated Marketing & Experiences (IMX), The Coca-Cola Company, India & South West Asia
  • Jini Mathai, Regional Head-Southeast Asia, Havas Health and You, Southeast Asia

Announced today are 197 experts from across 58 markets, representing the global industry’s leading talent from a diverse range of disciplines. The Cannes Lions Shortlisting Juries will take part in judging entries remotely from their home locations worldwide. 

Simon Cook, CEO, LIONS, comments, “The first round of judging, which establishes the Cannes Lions shortlist is critical. We have a world-class line up of exceptional talent, and experts from around the world who bring much commitment and expertise to the important task in hand. I’d like to extend my gratitude for their hard work in curating the work that will go on to be awarded and recognised at the Festival this year.”

The 2023 Shortlisting Jury members have been named as: 

Classic Track

Film Lions:

Andreas Tatzreiter, CEO, Executive Creative Director, Spießer & Spinner, Austria, 

Anisa Dzindo, Executive Producer / Producer, B-Reel Films, Sweden, 

Anne Boothroyd, Executive Creative Director, Freelance (previously Dentsu Creative), New Zealand

Bart Vande Maele, Head of Production, Happiness, Belgium

Binaifer Dulani, Creative and Founding Member, Talented, India

Cj de Silva-Ong, Executive Creative Director, TBWA\SMP, The Philippines

Corinna Martínez, Head of Production, Mastodonte, Mexico

David Caballero, Chief Creative Officer, Wunderman Thompson, Spain

Eirik Sørensen, Creative, TRY, Norway

Francisco Bledel, Executive Creative Director, Publicis Argentina, LATAM

Helen King, Digital Director Creative, adidas, Global

Hiroyo Kanehako, Creative Director, Dentsu Inc., Japan

Jake O'Driscoll, Creative Director, Boys + Girls, Ireland

Jin Yang, Creative Partner, Leo Burnett, Taiwan

Johanna Lubin, Global Marketing Manager, Brand Purpose, Social Impact & Community, Global

Juan Rueda, Director and Partner, Akira Cine, Colombia

Marielle Wilsdorf, Chief Creative Officer, GGH MullenLowe GmbH, Germany

Miguel Bemfica, Chief Creative Officer, VMLY&R, MENA

Nopharit Dusadeedumkoeng, Deputy Executive Creative Director, Wolf Bkk, Thailand

Tim Fremmich Andresen, Creative Director, NORD DDB, Denmark

Volkan Dalkilic, Chief Creative Officer, Havas Turkiye, Turkey

Outdoor Lions:

Ahmed Mustafa, Executive Creative Director, Adcom Leo Burnett, Pakistan

Akama Davies, VP, Global Solutions and Operations, GroupM Nexus, Global

Alan Hairong Ji, CMO & VP, Focus Media, China & Japan

Andrew Brunton, Managing Director, EMEA, Billups, EMEA

Angie Tijam-Tohid, Executive Creative Director, Havas Ortega Group, The Philippines

Arah Kim, Associate Creative Director, Wieden+Kennedy, Mexico

Damisa Ongsiriwattana, Co-Founder / Chief Creative Officer, SOUR Bangkok, Thailand

Damon Stapleton, Chief Creative Officer, The Monkeys, New Zealand

Donevan Chew, Chief Creative Officer, Havas Immerse, Malaysia

Finnja Skornia, Creative Director, DDB Group, Germany

Gerardo Vazquez, Creative Director, VMLY&R, Puerto Rico

Ivo Purvis, Executive Creative Director, Dentsu Creative, Portugal

Juan Gómez, Brand Manager, Banco de Bogotá, Colombia

Laura Villanueva Chávez, Brand, Communications & Insight Manager, Mibanco, Peru

Man Wai Wong, VP, Group Creative Director, Design, Leo Burnett, Canada

Manuel Wenzel, Chief Creative Officer, TBWA\Switzerland AG, Switzerland

Moumita Pal, Senior Creative Director, FCB, India

Nayeli Kremb, Creative Director, Perfect Fools, Sweden

Nicolas Gaspart, Copywriter, mortierbrigade, Belgium

Nicolas Geahchan, Executive Creative Director, Wunderman Thompson, Qatar

Pia Lystad, Art Director, POL, Norway

Yoofi Breww, Creative Director, MullenLowe Accra, Ghana

Print & Publishing Lions:

Carlos Fernandez Oxte, Head of Creative / Executive Creative Director, Archer Troy, Mexico

Ida Gronblom, Executive Creative Director, FCB, USA

Maria Lujan Donaire, Executive Creative Director, HOY by Havas, LATAM

Nadia Charif, Senior Art Director, Dentsu Creative, Italy

Ravi Shanker, Chief Creative Officer, Publicis Groupe, Indonesia

Rianna Woods, Senior Art Director, Wunderman Thompson, UK

Radio & Audio Lions:

Carol Lambert, Creative Director, Creative Consultant, Ireland

Francisco Cavada, Chief Creative Officer, BBDO, Chile

Leen Renders, Director, Het Geluidshuis, Belgium

Nathalie Hasson, Head of Audio Narrative & Podcasts, HRCLS, France

Oje Ojeaga, CEO / Chief Creative Officer, Up In The Sky, Nigeria

Pipo Morano, Executive Creative Director, Grey, LATAM

Craft Track

Design Lions:

Aurélie Scalabre, Creative Director, BETC, France

Haoxi Lv, Senior Design Expert, Ant Group, Mainland China

Jonathan Johnsongriffin, VP, Global Brand Creative, Google Brand Studio, Google, Global

Mohammed Sehly, Executive Creative Director, Leo Burnett, Saudi Arabia

Prue Jones, Design and Creative Director, Accenture Song, Australia

Shekhar Badve, Founder Director, Lokus Design Pvt. Ltd., India

Film Craft Lions:

Aaron Leung, Head of Copy, Bates Pan Gulf LLC, UAE

Adrian Aspani, General Manager, LaDoble, Buenos Aires, Ciudad de Mexico, Madrid, Miami

Anne Akande, VFX Producer, Unini Productions Limited, UK

Belén Garau, Founder / Service Producer, The Local Production Company, Spain

Christina Yu, Director, Merchant, Canada

Damir Ciglar, Co Founder / CEO, Imago Ogilvy, SEE

Deh Bastos, Creative Director, Publicis Brasil, LATAM

Ewan Yap, Creative Director, TBWA\Media Arts Lab, Mainland China

Fiona King, Global Director of Production, Sweetshop, Global

Jeana Theron-Khoury, Film Director, Darling Films, South Africa

Karim Naceur, Global Head of Tv Production, BETC, Global

Kimberly Chin, Founder / Creative / Composer, Pitch Audio+Magic, Malaysia

Linnea Roxeheim, Director, Giants & Toys, Sweden

Martin Furze, Creative Director & Director, Bacon Production, Global

Ronak Chugh, Director, Rooted Films, India

Santiago Chaumont, Director, Central Films, Mexico

Shima Green, Director / Photographer, Craft Worldwide, USA

Silvia Bergamaschi, Senior Producer, Indiana Production SPA, Italy

Stylianos Cotionis, CEO and Executive Producer, Foss Productions, Greece

Tobias Fueter, Co-Founder & Director, stories AG, Switzerland

Wuthisak Anarnkaporn, Film Director / Founder, FACTORY 01, Thailand

Industry Craft Lions:

Atiya Zaidi, Managing Director / Executive Creative Director, BBDO, Pakistan

Davor Bruketa, Chief Creative Officer, Bruketa&Zinic&Grey, Croatia

Mahesh Ambaliya, Creative Director, VMLY&R, India

Marie-Elaine Benoit, Creative Director, Branding & Design, Sid Lee, Canada

Pedro Americo, Executive Creative Director, McCann, Germany

Sally Anderson, Creative Director, MetaDesign, China

Engagement Track | In partnership with LinkedIn

Direct Lions:

Adrian Yeap, Executive Creative Director, Publicis, Singapore

Agnieszka Klimczak, Creative Partner, FCB&theMilkman, Poland

Anke Roell, Head of Copy, HeimatTBWA\, Germany

Ben Sever, Chief Creative Officer, Co-CEO, and Partner, Havas, Israel

Carla Leveratto, Head of Creative Works, Google, Italy

Christel Chong, Creative Director, DDB, Hong Kong SAR

Diana Ceausu-Caverly, Global Chief Strategy Officer, MRM, Global

Ebba Grenninger, Deputy CEO and Creative Director, Jung Relations, Sweden

Jake Barrow, Group Executive Creative Director, VMLY&R, Australia

Jorge Eliecer Pinto, Executive Creative Director, MullenLowe SSP3, Colombia

Kimmy Liu, Executive Creative Director, Cheil PengTai Beijing, Mainland China

Luis Enriquez, Chief Creative Officer, VMLY&R, Mexico

Lulo Calio, Chief Creative Officer & Founding Partner, Togetherwith, Argentina

Magd El Sherif, Co-Founder and Managing Partner, matter, Egypt

Manuel Ostyn, Creative Partner, Joe Public, Belgium

Matilda Egere-Cooper, Editorial Director, Dentsu Creative, UK

Rene Verbong, Executive Creative Director, DEPT®, The Netherlands

Rita-Maria Spielvogel, Creative Director, BBDO Wien, Austria

Roehl Sanchez, Chief Creative Officer, BIMM, Canada

Sergio Franco Tosso, Executive Creative Director, Fahrenheit DDB, Peru

Vincent Montocchio, Executive Creative Director, CIRCUS!, Mauritius

Whitney Michel, Executive Creative Director, Uniworld Group, South Africa

Media Lions:

Abelardo Ibanez, CEO, Zenith Media, Spain

Alicia Lorenzo, SVP Revenue Growth & Corporate Communication Director, Ignis Media Agency, Argentina

Ami Qian, CEO, Carat China, Mainland China

Clare Trafankowska, Managing Director, iProspect, dentsu, South Africa

Elda Choucair, CEO, Omnicom Media Group, MENA

Emilie Perrier, VP Havas Play Content & Media Partnerships, HAVAS PLAY, France

Ender Buruk, CEO, Mindshare, EMEA

Gaurav Virkar, P&G Global Media Leader, Procter & Gamble, Global

Helen Galanis, CEO, Initiative, Canada

Isabelle Dacz, CEO, Wavemaker, The Netherlands

Karine Ysebrant de Lendonck, Chief Media Officer, Publicis Groupe, Belgium

Kelly Rosnell-Shand, Client Partner, Spark Foundry NZ, New Zealand

Miguel Pava, CEO, PHD, Costa Rica

Morten Flamand, CEO, EssenceMediacom, Sweden

Naomi Michael, Chief Marketing & Communications Officer, Asia Pacific, IPG Mediabrands, APAC

Rasmus Philip, Senior Strategist, Uncle Grey, Denmark

Stacy Ann Effs, Senior Director, Strategy, Hearts & Science, USA

Stephen Onaivi, Managing Director, OMD Ghana (mediaReachOMD), Ghana

Takamasa Hirai, Planning Creative Director, ADK Marketing Solutions, Japan

Tal Kedmi, CEO, Reflect Media, Israel

Thomas Jamet, CEO, IPG Mediabrands & UM, France

Valentina Vieira, VP Marketing, Alpina, Colombia

PR Lions:

Carol Yeung, Managing Director, Golin, Hong Kong SAR

Carol Warui, Deputy Managing Partner Public Relations & Influence, Ogilvy Africa, Kenya

Damián Martínez Lahitou, CEO & Founder, Feedback PR, Argentina

Deborah De Klerck, Managing Director, Famous Relations, Belgium

Higinio Martínez, GM & Consejero Delegado, Omnicom PR Group, Spain & Portugal

Ivo Půr, Managing Director, Hero & Outlaw a.s., Czech Republic

Jacqueline Bosselaar, CEO, HPB | Het PR Bureau, The Netherlands

Jorg Riommi, Chief Creative Officer Central & Eastern Europe, Publicis Groupe, CEE

Razan Karim, Senior Communications Director, Red Havas Middle East, UAE

Ruxandra Papuc, Executive Creative Director, McCann, Romania

Sandrine Cormary, General Manager, Omnicom PR Group, France

Social & Influencer Lions:

Alberto Quirós, Chief Creative Officer, Jotabequ Grey, Costa Rica

Angelica Alvarado Ariza, VP Beyond Core, AbInbev, Colombia

Baba Touré, Founder, Hammerfest, EMEA

Carla El Maalouli, Marketing consultant, Freelance, MENA

Christina So, Group Digital Planning Director, FCB Aotearoa, New Zealand

Eoin Sherry, Global Executive Creative Director, LePub, Global

Helen Lee, Agency Lead, LinkedIn, Southeast Asia, Hong Kong SAR and Taiwan

Jennifer Hyland, Senior Director, Edelman, Ireland

Lorraine Ann Garcia, Social Media Lead, lululemon, APAC

Mami Koyama, Copywriter / Creative Planner, Dentsu, Japan

Michael Messer, Creative Director, Jung von Matt DONAU, Austria

Niat Asfaw Graca, General Manager, Serviceplan Bubble GmbH, Germany

Omaga Idirigbe, Executive Creative Director, DDB, Nigeria

Pablo Ferrari, Executive Creative Director, Independent, Mexico

Phindile Phiri, Director - Assets Influencer Partnerships Africa, The Coca-Cola Company, South Africa

Rahmon Agbaje, Co-Founder, Loud Parade, UK


Entertainment Track | In partnership with ESL FACEIT Group

Entertainment Lions:

Caroline Petruccelli, Head of Agency Production, Publicis Groupe, France

Devin Baker, Creative Director, 72andSunny, USA

Jason Fashade, Managing Director, Social & Experience, Ogilvy, Hong Kong SAR

Matias Anríquez, Creative Director, Wolf BCPP, Chile

Sumeli Chatterjee, Sr. Director, Integrated Marketing & Experiences (IMX), The Coca-Cola Company, India & South West Asia

Zizwe Vundla, CMO, Safaricom, East Africa

Experience Track

Brand Experience & Activation Lions:

Ashley Knight, Strategy Director, Jam3, The Netherlands

Chantal Silva Zúñiga, Digital Creative Director, DDB, Mexico

Doug Muir, Executive Creative Director, Proof, Canada

Genevieve Hoey, Creative Lead ANZ, 72andSunny, ANZ

Hasib Hasan Chowdhury, Sr. Group Creative Director, Adcomm Ltd., Bangladesh

HyungKyun Oh, Executive Creative Director, the.WATERMELON, APAC

Joachim Kortlepel, Executive Creative Director & Partner, Jung von Matt AG, Germany

Josefina Casellas, Executive Creative Director SS LATAM, R/GA, LATAM

Kazz Ishihara, Group Executive Creative Director, McCann Worldgroup, Japan

Keith Manning, Executive Creative Director, TBWA Hunt Lascaris, South Africa

Lucía Angulo, Head of Creative Business, Accenture Song, Spain

Mahesan M., Executive Creative Director, Cheil Worldwide, APAC

Mauricio Sarmiento, Chief Creative Officer, Leo Burnett Colombia / Publicis Groupe Panamá, LATAM

Paolo Garcia, Chief Creative Officer, Publicis Groupe, Vietnam

Peter Lund, Chief Creative Officer, AKQA, Global

Piotr Osinski, Regional Creative Director, VMLY&R, Poland

Rikke Sofie Jacobsen, Creative, POL Oslo, Norway

Rosana Vilcarromero, Head of Marketing, PlazaVea, Peru

Tamara Greene, Managing Director, Global Brands, Havas Creative Group, Global

Tulan Ma, Chief Creative Officer, BBDO China, Mainland China

Yasmina Boustani, Creative Director, Leo Burnett, UAE

Health Track

Health & Wellness Lions:

Annikka Koivu, Director, Health, wellbeing and food, Kaiku Group Ltd, Finland

Brian Wang, SVP, Head of Health, Edelman China, Mainland China

Emuron Alemu, Chief Creative Officer, The Quollective, Kenya

Gretel Lanner, Regional VP Latin America, Edgewell Personal Care, LATAM

Jayesh Nair, Digital Acceleration Lead, EMEA, Bayer Consumer Health, EMEA

Jini Mathai, Regional Head-Southeast Asia, Havas Health and You, Southeast Asia

Kai Baumann, Associate Creative Director, IPG Health, Germany

Lori Bullock, SVP, Executive Producer, Digitas Health, USA

Louise Ljungberg, Deputy CEO, ABBY.WORLD, Sweden

Mandie van der Merwe, Chief Creative Officer, Dentsu Creative, Australia

Shamel Washington, Associated Creative Director - Health Equity, Deloitte Digital, USA


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'Creativity' now has a much bigger canvas: Dentsu's Farishte Irani

One of the 13 jury members at Cannes Lions 2023, Irani, the Group Head - Copy, Dentsu Creative, shares her expectations from the fest, thoughts on creativity and the campaigns that make her 'jealous'

By Tanzila Shaikh | Apr 25, 2023 9:14 AM   |   4 min read

Farishte Irani

Cannes Lions 2023, the champion of creative excellence in advertising, kicks off on June 19 this year and the Indian ad land will be closely watching this year's fest since 13 of the industry's creative bests have been chosen to grace the jury. 

In the Cannes Lions 2023 Jury series, e4m spoke to Farishte Irani, Group Head - Copy, Dentsu Creative, who is one of the 13 jury members for the event this year. Irani will be looking after Print & Publishing Lions.  She spoke about creativity, and innovation and how she is looking forward to being jealous of other creative minds.   

Apart from creativity, Irani touched upon the fascinating use of AI, inclusivity and woke-washing, judging parameters for her and many more.

Edited excerpts:

With 13 Indian creative leaders as jurors on Cannes Lions this year, how do you the world has been perceiving the Indian ad industry?

I think the number of jurors reflects the sheer depth of creativity that exists in India – a kind of creativity that only someone who has grown up in the country can possess. India was always a country that did great purpose-driven work and campaigns that focussed on social issues. But now it’s being perceived as a country that breeds a unique perspective amongst its creatives. We understand purpose-driven ideas, but we've also learned how to avoid inauthentic work. The diverse culture and the innovative ideas that stole the show at Cannes last year have made India the market to look out for. 

How has the definition of creativity changed over time?

I don’t think the definition of creativity really has changed – creativity has always been something that pushes the industry forward. Back in the age of old-school advertising, it was perhaps beautifully crafted or innovatively placed print ads. Now creativity is still something that pushes the industry forward, except the mediums and asks have expanded. We've started looking at inclusivity, innovation, and digital/AI integration. 'Creativity' now has a much bigger canvas, but if you can be a good creative in 2023, you’d also probably be a good creative in 1973.

What constitutes a winning campaign? What criteria will you keep in mind?

I honestly don’t really have a checklist for a winning campaign; good creativity, for me, is still largely intuitive. For me, a winning campaign is something I instinctively fall in love with. Maybe it's so ridiculously fun, you wonder how the brand approved it. Maybe it's something that made you smile. Or execution that actually moves the industry forward and sets the tone for what's to come. My main metric for a winning campaign though is, 'How jealous does this make me?' The more jealous a campaign makes us as creatives, the better it is.

Have the judging parameters changed over time or from last year?

I think the parameter has always been excellent creativity, regardless of how that manifests. We do have guardrails in place as jury members, but like I said, authentic, excellent campaigns stand out regardless of the parameters. As jury members, we do keep an eye out for work that feeds into unfair biases, propagates a problematic ideology, and doesn’t try to force wokeness or technology into the idea – at the end of the day, every idea and execution needs to make sense in the brand universe. We've also started focusing on the effectiveness of the work, because a good campaign has to work for the brand and bring actual results. 

Will parameters like inclusivity and diversity gain brownie points, especially when many brands have been accused of woke washing?

Purpose-driven work is always great, but it HAS to be authentic to the brand. But no, it doesn’t gain brownie points. All of us want to create work that matters - sometimes it's a social issue that relates to us personally, and sometimes it's a brand-first campaign that has actual business impact. 

What are you expecting from this year's Cannes? 

I'm expecting work that makes me jealous. Campaigns that I'll go back to for inspiration myself. Most of all though, I'm expecting to learn and grow as a creative. Experiences like these make you question your biases and really listen to fellow jurors from different cultures. Honestly, I'm there to celebrate great creativity, not critique it.

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