Thursday, October 27, 2016
  • Monday, Jun. 20, 2016
Venables Bell Wins Cannes Lions Promo & Activation Grand Prix For REI Campaign
REI's "#OptOutside" campaign from Venables Bell & Partners, San Francisco, won the Cannes Lions Grand Prix in the Promo & Activation competition.
  • CANNES, France
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Venables Bell & Partners, San Francisco, scored the Cannes Lions Promo & Activation Grand Prix honor this evening at the 63rd International Festival of Creativity on the strength of its "#OptOutside" campaign for REI whereby the retailer closed its stores on Black Friday so that their employees and customers could instead enjoy the great outdoors, spending the time around Thanksgiving to be with family and friends. Promo & Activation jury president Rob Reilly, global creative chairman of McCann Worldgroup, called "#OptOutside" the bravest idea of the decade. “It’s about a brand living its authentic truth. A brand that places more value in its customers than short term profit and operates with conviction,” he said. “It didn’t impact culture, but exploded it.”

From a total of 3,458 entries in Promo & Activation, 107 Lions were awarded. Click here for a rundown of Promo & Activation Lions winners.

The night’s honors also spanned the Direct, Print & Publishing, Radio and Glass Lions competitions. Glass: The Lion for Change was devised in partnership with Lean In.Org and launched last year. The awards recognize work that positively impacts ingrained gender inequality, imbalance or injustice, and this year the Grand Prix was claimed by “6 Pack Band” for Hindustan Unilever, from Mindshare, Mumbai. Jury president, Madeline di Nonno, CEO of the Geena Davis Institute for Gender in Media, described the work as global, inclusive and impactful. “Gender equality is not only a women’s issue. It includes all aspects of marginalization, discrimination and unconscious bias faced by all genders.”

Entry fees from Glass will now be distributed to causes aligned with the goals of the award, including: UN Women, No Ceilings, Men Engage, Gender and Development Network, Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media, Women for Women, Pro Mujer, Equality Now Inc. and Global Fund for Women. With the assistance of a unique giving platform created by in/PACT, Festival attendees will each be able to allocate €100 ($113) of proceeds (€25, up to four times) throughout the remainder of the Festival to their cause of choice, via the Cannes Lions App. “This year, we are honored and excited to amplify our efforts, enabling delegates to play an active role,” said Kevin Eyres, CEO of in/PACT.

Click here for a rundown of Glass Lions winners.

Print & Publishing, Radio, Direct Lions
From a total of 3,097 entries, 75 Direct Lions were awarded and “The Swedish Number” for the Swedish Tourist Association, by INGO Stockholm, claimed the Grand Prix. This idea transcended tourism, becoming a demonstration of the country’s 250-year commitment to freedom of speech. “It’s refreshing to see a campaign that unites 9.5 million global brand ambassadors through the most direct form of communication: a one-to-one phone call,” said Mark Tutssel, Direct Lions jury president.

Click here for a rundown of Direct Lions winners.

Print & Publishing received 3,777 entries and awarded 80 Lions. The Grand Prix went to “McWhopper” for Burger King, by Y&R NZ. Jury president, Joji Jacob, group executive creative director of DDB Group, said they chose the work because it had the ability to start the conversation and be the linchpin of a master campaign.

Click here for a rundown of Print & Publishing Lions winners.

Radio gained 1,410 entries and presented 51 awards. The Grand Prix was presented to “The Everyman Meal – Colored Weights” for KFC, by Ogilvy & Mather, Johannesburg. The idea, said Jury president, Tom Eymundson, CEO and director of Pirate Group Inc, touched everyone in the jury room; regardless of gender, age or nationality, it resonated.

Click here for a rundown of Radio Lions winners.

For the first time in Cannes Lions history, the show was live-streamed via YouTube. This series of awards bestowed were truly international, with entries from over 70 countries making the shortlists.