Cannes Lions and Ketchum Announce Winners of 2015 Young Lions Marketers Competition

Cannes Lions Closing

Teams from the United Kingdom, Dominican Republic and Turkey Win Top Honours

Grace Sobey and Charlie Clinton of Unilever in the United Kingdom won the Gold Lion for the sixth-annual Young Lions Marketers Competition at the 62nd annual Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity. Sponsored by Ketchum, this year’s competition challenged 18 teams of young, in-house marketers from around the world to develop a creative brief for a product or service that would benefit Water Aid, an international NGO dedicated to improving access to safe water, hygiene and sanitation in the world’s poorest communities. Competitors presented their communication plans to a panel of industry leaders, which was led by Barri Rafferty, senior partner and CEO of North America for Ketchum.

Sobey, global media manager, foods, at Unilever, and Clinton, assistant digital brand manager for Unilever’s Dove brand, developed the winning brief to win the Gold Lion.

Clinton said of the winning campaign brief, “When we delivered the presentation, we felt we had done the best we possibly could do. We wanted to help WaterAid reach an entirely different audience and worked to ensure we did.”

Sobey agreed and added, “This is the best thing that has ever happened in my career, and I genuinely mean that.”

The team from the Dominican Republic, Banco BHD León’s Letizia Cantarella and Paola Ramos, won the Silver Lion, and the Bronze Lion went to the team from Turkey, Unilever’s Nilay Gözegir and Gizem Erbas.

Participants were briefed onsite at Cannes and then given 30 hours to develop their product or service concept before showcasing their communication plans in a two-page written brief and short presentation to the judging panel. In addition to Rafferty, the Young Lions Marketers Competition jury included Joanna Peña-Bickley, global chief creative officer for iX Studios IBM Interactive, and Mailine Swildens, head of The Zoo, Google’s creative and creative technology team, in Google’s SEEMEA (Southern and Eastern Europe, Middle East and Africa) region. The winning teams received their trophies at the Young Lions Marketers Competition award ceremony on Saturday, June 27.

Of the judging, Rafferty said, “These 36 competitors represent the best and the brightest young in-house marketers from around the world. It is incredibly inspiring to see how committed they are to using their talent to deliver truly creative, strategic ideas for such an important cause. I believe these future leaders of our industry will play a big role in helping to make our world a better place.”

Additional participants in this year’s competition hailed from Argentina, Australia, Belarus, Canada, China, Costa Rica, Finland, Hungary, India, Norway, the Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Spain and Sri Lanka.

This is the fifth year Ketchum has sponsored the Young Lions Marketers Competition. In addition to its sponsorship, the firm hosted two live panels on the main stage – “Whatever You Do, Don’t Call Them Grey (or Silver),” focused on marketing to the age 50+ audience, and “The Art of the Deal: Live!” in which Ketchum Sounds hosted a mock branded integration negotiation live on stage with Pernod Ricard and music artist Natalie Imbruglia. In addition, Ketchum representatives posted their insights and observations during the festival through the agency’s #KetchumCannes hub.