Amidst growing concerns expressed by industry leaders, the organisers of Cannes Lions have announced the creation of an advisory committee to help in shaping the future of the festival and ensure it continues to respond to the needs of the industry.
Over the last three days, WPP's Martin Sorrell and IPG's Michael Roth have expressed concerns of the structure of the festival. Sorrell even recommended moving the festival out of Cannes. Also, Publicis Groupe will not be entering the awards at Cannes Lions next year so that it can redirect its investments on its new AI based platform.
With major advertisers, partners, agency networks and the Mayor of Cannes as members, the committee will be a platform for stakeholders in the event to share their views and recommendations around all aspects of the Cannes Lions experience.
Commitments have already been received from Marc Pritchard, chief brand officer of Procter & Gamble, Keith Weed, chief marketing and communications officer, Unilever, Fernando Machado, head of brand marketing, Burger King, Fiona Carter, chief brand officer, AT&T and Jan Derck van Karnebeek, chief commercial officer at Heineken, with more members to be announced soon.
“There have been a lot of discussions this week about the structure of the Festival, and we want to create the right Cannes Lions experience for all participants. The thing that unites them all is their belief in creativity as a powerful force in the world and this is at the heart of everything we do. Apart from advertisers we will also consult with all global creative leaders, heads of holding companies and other major partners,” said Philip Thomas, CEO of Ascential Events, organisers of Cannes Lions.
Pritchard added, "We attend Cannes Lions to focus on creativity to drive growth. It's the right time to step back and take a look at the best way forward for Cannes Lions to provide the best possible platform for creativity in our industry. P&G is ready and willing to help."
“Cannes Lions has always been a force for good in promoting creativity as a core driver of our businesses”, said Jan Derck van Karnebeek. “We are committed to assist where we can in charting the right way forward.”
The full list of members will be announced soon and the first meeting is expected to take place shortly after the festival. "We look forward to sharing the committee’s recommendations with the global creative community, and we’re excited to see the ideas produced by this deeper collaboration," said Thomas.