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Loerie Awards 2014: Part 1 - What happened on the night

Sustainability and the partnership between client and agency were clearly the common denominator on the first night of the 36th Annual Loerie Awards, with many of the iconic birds going to campaigns that supported social development projects.
Two of the three Grand Prix winners also had a very strong emphasis on the spirit of Africa. The first - in the Outdoor Media category - went to Coca-Cola South Africa and its agency FCB South Africa for "A Rainbow for a Rainbow Nation", which celebrated South Africa's 20 years of democracy with a massive billboard on one of Joburg's tallest buildings. By combining a little bit of science with a touch of magic, they created a rainbow above the building using light refraction and unusable recycled water, much to the wonderment of all who saw it.

Loerie Awards 2014: Part 1 - What happened on the night
One Kingdom Creative Studio harnessed the tremendous reach of mobile accessibility on the continent to create an Afrocentric emoticon called Oju for its client Mi-Phone to take the second Grand Prix in the Digital and Interactive Mobile Applications and Sites category.

The third Grand Prix award went to Grid World Wide Branding and client Anti Est for their #Unlearn campaign in the Design Mixed Medium category.

Relationship building

The synergy between agency and client was also acknowledged for the first time at the 2014 at this year's awards ceremony, pointing to the fundamental element of any award-winning campaign - that there has to be a shared vision of what the creative process is trying to achieve.

Ubuntu Award

Sponsored by Unilever, the Ubuntu Award recognises sustainable marketing across a variety of sectors. The award is for brands and rewards campaigns that contribute to community development as well as making good business sense. This year's award went to 140 BBDO and Exclusive Books for the Exclusive SEED Library project, which creates imaginative reading spaces in underprivileged schools to encourage reading and learning.

Creative Future Scholarship

Another feather in the Loeries cap is the advent of the Creative Future Scholarship, once again focused on building a sustainable future within the creative industry through education.

"We go out to high schools across the country, to build awareness and seek out the kind of talent that would benefit from our support," says Andrew Human, CEO: The Loerie Awards.

This year's recipient, Banzi Kasana, is a learner at SACS High School in Newlands, Cape Town. He will be studying at the AAA School of Advertising.
The scholarship covers just about all aspects of his studies - fees, study materials, accommodation and living expenses - as part of his scholarship. Mentorship, internship and employment in the communications industry are also included in the programme. Through this process, learners who would otherwise be unaware of the opportunities available are brought into the creative industry.

"Banzi is no exception and we are proud and excited to add him to the list of talented students on our programme. We have high expectations for Banzi and are looking forward to working with him in the next three years," says Creative Future Scholarship Project Manager, Sune Stassen.

This year, for the first time, additional bursaries were offered by Vega School of Brand Leadership and the Red & Yellow School allowing two more students to benefit from the programme. Recipients of these bursaries are Ida Janine van Staden from Parklands College and Chiquita Williams from PJ Olivier Art Centre in Stellenbosch.

Marketing Leadership and Innovation Award

The 2014 Marketing Leadership and Innovation Award recipient is Claudia Walters, Marketing Manager for Mercedes Benz South Africa.

According to the testimonial on her contribution to creative innovation: "Her guidance in bold creative efforts has helped steer the repositioning of the brand in South Africa, focusing on a new, more engaged target audience. Her increasing focus on the expanding digital environment, while still pushing the boundaries of traditional advertising, has led to the brand becoming a digital trendsetter within the motor industry in South Africa. As a marketer, one relies on intuition, and this has stood Walters in good stead, as her efforts in augmenting digital marketing have shown remarkable results. Always at the forefront of evolving trends, the visible results of these efforts has led to a plethora of accolades for the Mercedes-Benz brand, most recently the Sunday Times Top Brands Award - Cars. Importantly, these marketing efforts have impacted on the bottom line: Mercedes-Benz continues to perform well and the C-Class is consistently the top selling passenger car in the luxury segment in South Africa."

Antalis Creative Use of Paper Award

The winner of the 2014 Antalis Creative Use of Paper Award is the Johannesburg Zoo and Y&R South Africa for "See what comes out in the dark". The award includes two Apple iPads for the creative team.

The Times Newspaper Award

The Times Newspaper Award went to One School at a Time and Joe Public for "Project English". As part of the prize, Joe Public secures next year's campaign for the Times Creative Press Ad challenge, valued at R160,000.

Starting off with a bang

The evening got off to a colourful start when a cascade of balloons was released in the auditorium. This reduced the usually uber-cool advertising crowd to a bunch of kids gleefully batting the balloons around the room. The activity became even more frenzied when MC John Vlismas announced that two of the orbs contained vouchers for R10,000 worth of advertising on Bizcommunity.com.

To a whimper

About 10 minutes into the ceremony, the lights went out - literally - probably due to an overload from the sound system being cranked up to ear-ringing volume that literally had the floor vibrating. The problem was quickly sorted out and the slick Loeries production proceeded without another hitch.

Welcome and goodbye

Xolisa Dyeshana, Joe Public Executive Creative Director, bade a fond farewell to the crowd as his two-year tenure as chairman of the Loerie Awards comes to an end. He welcomed incoming chairman, Neo Mashigo, co-Executive Creative Director of Ogilvy & Mather Johannesburg.

The Loeries tally

The first night covered the crafts, digital, outdoor, design, poster, print and student awards. Joe Public dominated the 142 birds dished out with a brace of 16, while King James, Young & Rubicam and Ogilvy & Mather - in their various guises - also picked up their fair share of the awards. The student categories were dominated by AAA School of Advertising.

Loeries 2014 is well underway with a lot more to come in its second chapter.

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