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Loeries Content Feature

#Loeries2019: The importance of creating work that's locally relevant but still globally competitive

For the second time in a row, TBWA\ was recognised as Regional Agency Group of the Year at the Loeries Awards, which, this year, took place on Saturday, 24 August 2019 at the Durban ICC.
The TBWA\ team on stage accepting the award for Regional Agency of the Year. Image credit: Julian Carelsen/2019 Loerie Awards.
The TBWA\ team on stage accepting the award for Regional Agency of the Year. Image credit: Julian Carelsen/2019 Loerie Awards.

In total, the agency won 19 Loeries, including one Grand Prix, two Golds, one Silver, seven Bronzes, four Craft Golds and four Craft Certificates.

Peter Khoury, CCO of TBWA\Hunt Lascaris, said that whilst being locally relevant is hugely important to them, it is also important to remain globally competitive. He said that winning Regional Agency Group of the Year for the second year in a row shows that they have these two values in perfect balance.

Here he talks more about what this latest accolade means to the agency and why he is personally proud of these achievements.

Huge congratulations on being named Regional Agency Group of the Year, among all your other Loeries wins this year! What does this recognition mean to you and the agency?

TBWA has won this for the second year in a row. This is an amazing feat and is an acknowledgement of our collective capabilities across our region: creating iconic, compelling and relevant work for our clients across the region and on multiple platforms that leverage every media channel.

BizcommunityWhy are you proud of these achievements?

Whilst being locally relevant is hugely important, it is also important to remain globally competitive. Winning Regional Agency Group of the Year for the second year in a row shows that we have these two values in perfect balance and we’re gaining momentum in producing this work at pace and at scale; we have considered the nuances of our different local markets as we go.

I am especially proud of the work we created for MTN South Africa, which had 38 finalists and won six Loeries (Gold, Silver and Bronze), and also of our work for City Lodge Hotel Group, which won a Grand Prix and a fistful of golds. The work for both these brands ooze local insights and relevance and was produced at a world-class level.

The work Grid Worldwide did for Saint is exceptional; they continue to stretch themselves and consistently develop world-class work, both locally and abroad, for iconic brands. TBWA Istanbul won the Grand Prix again in the design category, which is two years in a row for them. Cem Topcuoglu, Regional CEO of TBWA, adds, “It’s great to see our regional network building on its strong foundations. Next year, we’re going for the hat trick”.

What do you think set your agency apart from the rest?

The TBWA collective is not like any other global or regional network. We are connected to the people in our worldwide collective in deep and meaningful ways, which allow us to gather, share and help each other at scale.

We define ourselves as the cultural engine for 21st-century businesses and if we did not travel to other markets, worked on other briefs, as well as shared insights, methodologies, best practices and how we overcome challenges, etc., we would never be able to live up to this. We have a ‘Re-founder’ mentality that empowers each local office to take ownership and drives each company from where they are now to a place that gives them a bigger share of the future.

Please share your Loeries Creative Week experience with us.

Loeries did a great job, as always. It was inspirational, to say the least. There were great speakers and huge learnings for me, personally.

Comment on the current creative landscape in South Africa and how this compares globally?

South Africa, in general, excels in certain kinds of communication, such as radio and design, but we are falling behind when it comes to the more 21st-century ways of doing things. We are not as globally competitive in the more nuanced categories of work (branded entertainment, direct, social media and innovation, to name a few).

Our ideas are great, but we are falling short when it comes to how we are choosing to execute these ideas across platforms. SA may not have developed as fast as other markets, but now is the time to truly embrace every medium and opportunity.

An awesome thing to see is that we are embracing who we are as a country and are really producing work that reflects our stories, aesthetics, cultures and society. This is distinctive and really fresh to the rest of the world and hugely inspiring to our local consumers. We need more of this kind of work – great, local insights and stories but executed in a world-class way.

What's next?

We have a great momentum at the moment in terms of being experimental, producing great work for big brands at scale and evolving our company each and every day to stay ahead of the curve. For us, it is just about staying open-minded, to challenge and change and to use them to propel us to bigger opportunities that reinvent who we are and what we do.

For news and updates, visit TBWA\'s press office by clicking here and keep an eye on our Loeries special section for more in-depth coverage of this year's awards.

About Juanita Pienaar

Juanita is the former editor of the marketing & media portal on the Bizcommunity website. She was also a contributing writer.
We develop business-changing, culture-defining and award winning ideas for brands. Ranked in the top 3 regional networks in Africa and consistently in the top 10 global agencies.
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