The TBWA Africa\Middle East Network comprising Creative, PR and Digital Agencies from 26 countries across Africa and the Middle East, gathered in Durban, South Africa for its annual Leadership Conference between 27th November and 1st December. Conference ended with the award night, dubbed “Africannes” celebrating creativity, craft and effectiveness of campaigns over the last 12 months.
The Proudly Made in Aba Campaign (PMIA) won the Grand Prix Award which is an award given to the campaign that is not just “best in class” but “only in class”. The Grand Prix, the highest possible recognition of its kind in the network, is only awarded when a campaign is seen to meet the very highest standards in Creativity, Execution and Impact. This was only the 2nd Grand Prix awarded in the last 5 years.
The jury for the award selection was headed by John Hunt, Global Creative Chairman, TBWA\Worldwide, who has been a member and chair of global award panels in the advertising and creativity industry over the last 3 decades.
Speaking at the award ceremony, Mr. Hunt, specifically mentioned the importance of ensuring that communication campaigns are not treated with a knee jerk/start and stop approach but with a clear intention to create impact and affect the lives of people. He recognized that the Proudly Made in Abu campaign had clearly demonstrated these positive traits and also commended TBWA\CONCEPT Nigeria for finding the right partner in Ford Foundation, who helped drive the success of the campaign. He was also particularly excited that the campaign is continuing into the next year with even more initiatives both with Ford Foundation and also new partners who are keen to support the campaign, having seen the power and impact of the campaign.
The PMIA campaign had earlier won a Gold and Silver in other categories before winning the ultimate prize.
The Gold Award in the Use of Content category, was celebrated as an excellent example of allowing the people a platform to tell their stories and then packaging it in a way that it would be resonant and striking to the audience, leading to emotional and practical connections. Mr Hunt, made it clear that there was a need for more of these type of examples of Telling African stories to the world, in order to reshape the perceptions of Africa and celebrate the beauty , strength and industry, as represented by the story of Aba.
The PMIA Logo won a Silver in the Design and Corporate Identity category, which Mr Hunt said was an example of simplicity in design that helps brands stand out in clutter. He was particularly excited about how the simplicity allowed for easy adaptation across the various clusters in Aba.
He was of the belief that the campaign was a great example to the rest of the network and also personally committed to supporting the Nigerian Team in packaging the campaign entry into other global award shows, to be able to showcase both the Agency, as well as the great work being done in Aba.
The awards were received on behalf of TBWA\CONCEPT by Kelechi Nwosu (Managing Director), Ranti Atunwa ( Creative Director) and Osibo Imhoitsike ( Business Director )
Speaking on behalf of the agency, Kelechi Nwosu, was thankful to the jury and TBWA\ AME network for the recognition and support in pushing the campaign beyond borders. He also recognized Ford’s role in not only believing in the initiative but also providing continued support for the project as well as the Abia State Government team for their support in executing the campaign. He affirmed that the PMIA project was going on to do even more in 2018 and beyond.
Earlier in the conference, Ranti Atunwa and Osibo Imhoitsike had made a presentation/case study to the Regional Plenary on “ Aba: The Case of a Story “Untold” which had given delegates more insights into the background and story of how the campaign was developed over the last 12 months.