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Advertising Association

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UK remains in top three most awarded countries at the festival. 41 UK advertising companies took part in a trade mission

Minister for Exports, Mike Freer MP, has congratulated the UK advertising and marketing services companies whose 85 wins at the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity saw the UK remain in the top three most awarded countries in the world. The UK’s win total made it Europe’s leading territory and the second highest performance behind the United States, next followed by Brazil.

To complement the festival’s activities, over 41 UK advertising companies took part in a successful trade mission in Cannes, led by the UK Advertising Exports Group (UKAEG) and Department for International Trade (DIT). The UK’s biggest trade mission to date saw an extensive programme of events, including a roundtable with Campaign featuring senior leaders from brands such as McDonald’s, Mars, United Airlines, Diageo, Dole, Essity and the NFL meet with UKAEG companies. The programme also included Creativity Rocks, a global gathering which featured up-and-coming UK band, Ferris & Sylvester, who also performed at Glastonbury last weekend. To celebrate great creativity and global growth, an industry coalition led by the Advertising Association spearheaded a new campaign for the festival with support from DIT and industry partners including APA, Clear Channel, Channel 4, Framestore, M&C Saatchi, Pinterest, and PwC. 

The UK was also well represented outside of the awards, sending more than 67 speakers and 43 UK jurors to Cannes Lions establishing the UK as a centre for excellence and review the world’s best creative work. The success at this year’s festival is yet another sign of the strength of the UK’s creativity, following the figures of our latest export report, which showed we sold £11.7bn worth of UK advertising around the world in 2020.

In addition, the Advertising Association also hosted a programme of events to showcase its wider initiatives on behalf of the industry, including sustainability, inclusion and trust. The week saw the successful launch of Ad Net Zero Global on stage at the Cannes Lions Palais, with 10 leading companies in advertising and 10 international trade bodies supporting the worldwide expansion of the UK’s sustainability action plan for the advertising industry. 

Mike Freer MP, Minister for Exports, said: “UK businesses lead the way in unleashing creativity, innovation and tech to deliver impact and results for global brands – as demonstrated in Cannes last week. It’s fantastic to see the UK in the top three global award-winners – a superb achievement showing the country has maintained its creative excellence despite the challenges of the pandemic. DIT and the Advertising Association are working hard to ensure the world’s best advertising and marketing professionals see our thriving creative industries are open for business.”

Rupert Daniels, Director of Digital, Education, Creative, Consumer and Sports at Department for International Trade, said: “The UK’s mission to Cannes Lions was a brilliant showcase for 41 companies who represented the very best of the sector in our joint drive to boost exports of advertising and marketing services to customers around the world. It was brilliantly delivered by the UK representatives of LIONS, the Advertising Association, along with its group of partner companies, who all backed an extensive networking programme and supporting creative campaign. This has helped build a very strong base for future activities and I’m looking forward to seeing what can be achieved next through further trade missions and campaigns in partnership with the UK advertising industry.” 

Aisling Conlon, International Trade Director, Advertising Association, said: “Our first in-person trade mission for the UK Advertising Exports Group at Cannes Lions has been a huge success, and as UK representatives we are immensely proud of retaining our position within the top three award-winners in the world. For any business looking to sell British creativity and advertising services around the world, this trade mission has strengthened the values the UK brings to unlock new markets. We look forward to building on the great partnerships we have created with Government, industry partners, trade mission companies and colleagues around the world.”

Joel Mishcon, Founder & CEO, Chrome Productions, said: “We had an outstanding week at the 2022 Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity. We feel honoured to have been selected as one of 41 companies representing the “best of UK creativity”. We met many wonderful people and fascinating companies from around the globe and relished the opportunity to share our knowledge and expertise on round tables, talks and numerous networking opportunities. I would encourage all UK companies looking to expand their business to join UKAEG and their future trade missions.”


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