Two young Australian media agency workers have taken out gold at the Cannes Lions Festival.
Jack Smyth, a communications strategist at Initiative, and UM strategy director Chris Colter won the Media Lions Gold award in the Young Lions competition.
The pair qualified for the Cannes competition after taking out the 2015 Australian Young Lions competition run by News Corp Australia.
The judges described the work of Mr Colter and Mr Smyth as “head and shoulders” above that of the 27 other contenders in the category.
The award is one of the most prestigious in the industry, and this year was based around the scenario of planning a media campaign to inspire at least 20 wealthy individuals to join the “Malaria No More” cause. The charity is working to reduce malaria deaths and cases by 90 per cent by 2030 and to develop treatments and anti-malaria programs in Africa.
Mr Colter and Mr Smyth developed the idea of engaging the owners of English Premier League teams in a bidding war for a top new talent from Africa. The money raised would go to the Malaria No More campaign.
Their execution involved partners and sponsors and owned and earned media, according to a statement from News Corp Australia.
“We were excited just to be here, winning in Australia was our big win,” Mr Colter said in the statement. “But this [is] the icing on the icing.”
Mr Smyth said the pair was “absolutely blown away.”
Five Australian Young Lions teams were sent to Cannes by News Corp Australia this year, with two gold and three silver awards already notched up in previous years.
News Corp partners with Storyful to cover festival
Social media aggregation company Storyful has joined forces with News Corp Australia to curate and cover the2015 International Cannes Lions Festival.
Storyful will monitor, uncover and curate content on social media from Cannes throughout the festival and present it at newscorpaustralia.com/cannes2015.
“Cutting through the noise and finding the best social insights and content is at the heart of what Storyful does,” the company’s partnerships director Neil Varcoe said.
News Corp Australia’s director of national sales Sharb Farjami said the coverage would mean innovative ideas from the international advertising community would be delivered to advertisers in Australia.
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