Cannes Lions 2009 will now have a category called PR Lions. This was announced by the organisers of the 56th Cannes Lions International Advertising Festival in a statement released on Wednesday. PR Lions will "honour the creative use of reputation management by the building and preservation of trust and understanding between individuals, businesses or organisations and their publics." Categories will broadly include Sector Related PR, Product and Service and Technique.
Entries will be judged on the basis of Strategy, Creativity and Originality, Execution and Results. The winners of the first ever PR Lions and Grand Prix will be honoured in Cannes on Monday 22nd of June 2009 alongside the Direct and Promo Lions winners.
Lord Tim Bell (pictured), chairman of Chime Communications, will chair the inaugural PR Lions jury. During a distinguished career, Lord Bell helped found Saatchi & Saatchi in 1970. He successfully ran the election campaign for the Conservative Party in 1979 and again in 1983. He became deputy chairman of The Lowe Group in 1985 and he subsequently bought out the communications division, Lowe Bell Communications in 1989. He is now chairman and a major shareholder in Chime Communications Plc.
Philip Thomas, festival CEO, said, "Launching PR at Cannes has been on our radar for quite a while and as with any new category we introduce, it takes time to prepare to the standard we expect and is expected of us. The time is now right and we are extremely honoured to have Lord Tim Bell chair the first PR Lions jury. An authority on PR with a long and distinguished career, he will bring valuable knowledge and guidance to the inaugural PR Lions competition."
Lord Bell said, "I am honoured to chair the first ever PR jury. This new category will greatly enhance the celebration of communications that is Cannes Lions and will further elevate the recognition of reputation management within our industry."
Information regarding categories and how to submit entries to the new PR Lions competition will be available from 29 January 2009 at www.canneslions.com. The 56th International Advertising Festival will be held from 21 June to 27 June 2009 in Cannes, France.