TBWA back on top

A dominating performance at the Cannes Lions festival by TBWA Hunt Lascaris lifted the still-great Johannesburg agency back to the top of the South African Creative Advertising Leaderboard, a slender eight AdReview points ahead of Ogilvy Johannesburg. Before Cannes, it was lying fifth, writes Tony Koenderman.

In a generally bad year for South Africa, Hunts earned more than twice as many points at Cannes as its bigger rival.  Y&R which has been teetering on the brink of a big international win for the last couple of years, crawled up another two rungs of the ladder, while M&C Saatchi Abel suffered a wipeout which left it in fourth spot.

Hunts reined supreme for more than a decade as possibly South Africa’s greatest creative advertising resource in the 1980s and 1990s, but in recent years its record has been less impressive. However, many observers believe it is capable of a come-back.

See Ranking Tables – Creative Leaderboard.

Competitively, 2015 has been one of the worst years ever for the South African advertising industry, but awards in global competition remain the most important criterion which to judge agency performance. The problem is that no two awards platforms are of equal merit.

Our solution  to this is to rank the competitions against each other on the basis of how difficult it is to win a Gold. This results in a level playing field where, for example, a Cannes Gold is worth two Loerie Golds. Thirteen awards platforms are included in the evaluations.

Thirty agencies have garnered competition points this year so far, and there remain a further eight or nine awards events where local agencies have a chance to pick up more points. The most important of these is the Loeries, which will be held in Durban next month.

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