A decade into the celebrated Sunday Times Generation Next Awards, SA's youth continue to guide marketers on what is considered to be 'cool'. The awards ceremony, held at the Nu Metro IL Grande cinema at Monte Casino in association with Waltons, saluted South Africa's most popular brands, products, celebrities and sport stars - as voted by almost six thousand youth aged 8 -23. The event hosted by Highveld FM's Anele Mdoda was topped-off with a live performance from local house band, MiCasa - who were voted Coolest Music Stars of 2014.
Trevor Ormerod, General Manager: Group Sales for Times Media says, "This year we've reached an incredible milestone marking a decade of the annual Generation Next Awards, an event that we are proud to say has established a strong presence amongst the youth, marketers and brands in South Africa today."
The Generation Next Survey, conducted by HDI Youth Marketeers, spans 72 categories that analyse the influence of products and people in the lives of South Africa's youth and what they consider to be cool.
"That we are now on year 10 of the survey feels crazy, but amazing! It has grown so much in that time, from an initial sample of less than 2,000 to over 5,500 now. And while changes are always fun to see, it's also great to see some winners like Coca-Cola, Vodacom and Doritos who have scooped gold for a decade," says Jason Levin, MD of HDI.
Youth performing on stage with band member, J Something from MiCasa
This year the coveted Coolest Brand Overall for 2014 was awarded to BMW.
YouTube sensation Caspar Lee presented the Coolest Cell Phone award to Apple iPhone trumping Blackberry's successful three year reign. Identity took first place for Coolest South African Fashion Brand.Metro FM won Coolest Radio Station for the second year running and Pick 'n Pay overtook Woolworths Food this year earning first place in the Coolest Local Grocery Store category.
New-comer Monster Energy claimed first place for Coolest Energy Product/Drink.
Double wins include Samsung (Coolest Computer Brand & Coolest Hi-Tech Gadget for its Galaxy Tablet), Trace (Coolest TV Channel & Coolest TV Music Channel) and Sun City (Coolest Holiday Destination & Coolest Local Entertainment Destination).
Soulbuddyz won first prize for Coolest Community Programme beating KFC's Add Hope in second place and new comer, Khumul'ekhaya made its debut in third.
Repeat winners in the brand categories and favourites amongst the youth include SAA (Coolest Domestic Airlines), Protea Hotels (Coolest Hotel Group), Vodacom (Coolest Telecomms Provider), BMW (Coolest Motor Vehicle), Engen (Coolest Petrol Station), McDonalds (Coolest Fast Food Place) Spur (Coolest Eat Out Place) and Coca Cola (Coolest Cold Drink).
South African TV presenter, Minnie Dlamini, was voted Coolest Local Female TV Star for the second year running while Trevor Noah scooped the top spot for both Coolest Local Male TV Star and Coolest Local Celebrity.
South African swimming champion, Chad Le Clos was voted Coolest Local Sportsman and Natalie du Toit won Coolest Local Sportswoman for the fourth consecutive year since the category's inception in 2011.
Omerod concludes that, "The Sunday Times Generation Next Awards has grown exponentially over the years. Our sponsors have played an integral role in building this influential platform that has helped empower the youth by giving them a voice. Thank you to Waltons for coming on board this year as we look forward to celebrating another year of the Awards with you."
The Generation Next Survey was conducted across seven regions including Eastern Cape, Free Sate, Gauteng, KwaZulu-Natal, Limpopo, North West and Western Cape.
For a complete list of category winners and survey methodology, please visit: www.TMAdRoom.co.za
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