First row – Fromleft to right:Pradeep Edward - Vice President, SLIM, Renuka Marshall - Head of the Young Marketers Competition, SLIM, Sheron Jayasundara - President, 4A's, Laila Hunasekera Martenstyn - President, IAA, Ranil De Silva - Metal Factor, Representative of the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity
Second row - Fromleft to right: Wasim Akram - Leo Burnett Solutions Inc., Malika Jinadasa - AOD, Sameera Ratnayake - Shift Solutions, Ryan Rebeira - Shift Solutions, Aaqib Reyal - Unilever Ceylon Ltd, Abitha Pathmanathan - Unilever Ceylon Ltd, KavindaWelegedera - SarvaIntegreatedPvt Ltd, Hibshi Moulana - SarvaIntegreatedPvt Ltd, Anfaz Amanulla - Leo Burnett Solutions Inc.
Nine young marketing communications professionals from Sri Lanka have been selected to represent the country at the Young Lions Competitions andthe Roger Hatchuel Academy, which are part of the prestigious Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity.These young professionals were selected to represent Sri Lanka at a local competition which had in excess of 60 participants. These programmes are organized by Metal Factor in partnership with the national industry bodies theInternational Advertising Association (IAA), the Association of Accredited Advertising Agencies (4As) and the Sri Lanka Institute of Marketing (SLIM). The local winners will now compete against the best teams in the world in their respective categories at the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity in France later this month.The Young Lions competition is the equivalent of the Olympics in advertising.
Fromleft to right:Wasim Akram - Leo Burnett Solutions Inc., Malika Jinadasa - AOD, Sameera Ratnayake - Shift Solutions, Ryan Rebeira - Shift Solutions, Aaqib Reyal - Unilever Ceylon Ltd, Abitha Pathmanathan - Unilever Ceylon Ltd, Kavinda Welegedera - SarvaIntegreatedPvt Ltd, HibshiMoulana - SarvaIntegreatedPvt Ltd, Anfaz Amanulla - Leo Burnett Solutions Inc.
The nine Sri Lankan Young Lions will compete in the Cyber, Media, Film and Young Marketer categories. Metal Factor which is headed by leading advertising personality Ranil de Silva serves as the Sri Lanka representative for the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity.This year the competition was conducted for the ninth consecutive year and continues to attract the very best industry talent from the leading agencies in the country as well as the marketing fraternity and institutions specializing in marketing communications and corporates. Ryan Rebeira and Sameera Ratnayake of Shift Solutions emerged as the winners in the Cyber category, Wasim Akram of Arc Sri Lanka and Anfaz Amanulla from Leo Burnett Solutions Inc. wonthe top spot in the Media category and Hibshi Moulana and Kavinda Welegedera from Sarva secured first place in the Film category. Abitha Pathmanathan and Aaqib Reyal from Unilever went on to win the Young Marketers Competition whilst the Academy of Design’s student MalikaJinadasa secured his place to attend the renowned Roger Hatchuel Academy.
Alain Parizeau - Head of Department, Graphic Communication and Design, AOD, Laila Hunasekera Martenstyn - President, IAA, Malika Jinadasa - AOD,Ranil De Silva - Metal Factor, Representative of the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity
Commenting on this year’s competition, Ranil de Silva, the Sri Lankan Representative of the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity stated: “I am extremely proud of these nine exceptional young professionals who have been selected to represent Sri Lanka at the 63rd Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity. It is my fervent hope that these teams will excel at the Young Lions competitions in Cannes and bring recognition to Sri Lanka. I am very happy to have been associated with the world’s most respected advertising festival for the last9 years. Since 2008, via Metal Factor we have provided opportunities for 57 young professionals to participate at the Cannes Lions and to gain invaluable leaning and experience. These 9 professionals will have a once in a life time opportunity to learn and to network. They will be able to learn from the global industry’s biggest names. I would like to wish each of the winning teams, all the very best as they embark on this incredible learning experience which will undoubtedly have a significant impact on their professional growth.”
Arosha Perera – Jury Head of the competitions, Anfaz Amanulla - Leo Burnett Solutions Inc., Wasim Akram - Leo Burnett Solutions Inc.,Ranil De Silva - Metal Factor, Representative of the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity
The local competition also brought together the Sri Lankan advertising fraternity’s top experts and leaders, who stepped forward to review and judge the work that was submitted by each of the competing teams. All teams had to respond to their respective briefs in just one-day. This year’s brief in the Cyber category called on participants to mobilize students in higher education institutions across Sri Lanka to stand up against ragging. The Media brief required participants to highlight how they would use media channels to encourage women across Sri Lanka to use sanitary napkins to maintain personal hygiene during menstruation instead of the cloth rags that are used in many rural parts of the country. The brief in the Film category required participants to create awareness about HIV/AIDs, whilst reducing the stigma that surrounds the disease by dispelling myths and highlighting how HIV+ individuals can still live a happy and productive life. The various panelsthat reviewed the subjects included the best in class professionals from the industry.
Abitha Pathmanathan - Unilever Ceylon Ltd,Pradeep Edward - Vice President, SLIM, Aaqib Reyal - Unilever Ceylon Ltd
Founded in 1954, the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity is an eight-day programme that focuses on the areas of creative inspiration, celebration, education and networking. Over 15,000 delegates from around 100 countries attend the festival, making it the only truly global meeting-place for communications professionals to connect, share and discover the latest advancements, trends and innovations in the industry. The most coveted creative accolades, The Lions, are also judged and presented at the festival. Over 40,000 submissions from 23 categories are rigorously reviewed by respected industry professionals before the highly coveted awards are presented.
Kavinda Welegedera - SarvaIntegreatedPvt Ltd, HibshiMoulana - SarvaIntegreatedPvt Ltd
Metal Factor is an initiative of Ranil de Silva which he terms is his CSR initiative for an industry which has rewarded him immensely. Metal Factor represents some of the world’s most respected festivals in Sri Lanka. Metal Factor via these festivals provides young professionals the opportunity to gain immense experience by participating in the various competitions. Metal Factor’s commitment is to uplift the standards of the marketing communications industry in Sri Lanka.
Sameera Ratnayake - Shift Solutions, SujeewaSamarasekera - CEO/Director, Shift Solutions, Ryan Rebeira - Shift Solutions