(ASSAAD AND RITA DAW)
JWT’s Mena network bagged 12 Mena Cristal Awards at this year’s Faraya festivities, making them the most awarded advertising network in the event.
The awards saw the elite of the media and publishing industry from the Middle East and North Africa come out on top across advertising platforms including film, magazine, daily press, radio, marketing services, integrated campaigns, outdoor, cyber and the best communication tool category.
Chief Creative Officer for JWT Middle East and North Africa Ramsey Naja said: “There’s joy here. This agency puts its heart and soul into enjoying what it does and having fun doing it. Usually it pays off. We were going to have a party regardless of the results.”
Naja added that unlike any other agency, JWT were awarded across the creative map including Dubai, Cairo and Beirut but also those further flung regions such as Tunisia, Casablanca and Kuwait.
“We’re a nimble agency, which I prefer to refer to as one office with very long corridors, as apposed to the traditional ‘network’.”
Vatche Keverian, JWT CEO for the Gulf, said: “Awards are emotional rewards, in recognition of great ideas and the hard work people put into this industry day in day out. It makes those sleepless nights worthwhile.”
Chafic Haddad, JWT Dubai’s Executive Creative Director, said: “Get the environment right and the great work will come by itself.” The Dubai team won the lion’s share of the awards.
Client campaign wins across the JWT Mena network this year include AIG insurance, Nestle KitKat, Unilever, Lipton Green Tea and Lux, Gargash Enterprises, HSBC, MTC-Atheer, Book World, Taiba Hospital, Dubai Autism Centre and Reynolds.
Running since 2005, the Mena Cristal Awards rewards the best advertising work from the Middle East and North Africa, following similar rules to the Meribel Ad Festival and the Central Europe Cristal Awards, which are organised by the same company.
Among other winners, WPP Group’s MediaInsight UAE walked away with a Grand Cristal for their Nestle Coffee Mate campaign and Mindshare won a Cristal for their Nando’s “Run for your Peri-Peri” services campaign in Lebanon. JWT also emerged triumphant at the first Campaign Middle East Awards winning five medals, including gold in the outdoor campaign category.
The world’s oldest advertising agency, and fourth largest in terms of billing, JWT impressed the jurors in several categories, and was the only agency with multiple awards coming from different regional offices its Riyadh, Beirut, Bahrain and Dubai offices all contributed to the agency’s impressive showing, leading all other agencies in the region in number of awards.
“It feels great to win,” said Roy Haddad, CEO of JWT Mena. “Having emerged as the top winning agency underscores the creative and strategic depth of the organisation across all marketing disciplines throughout the Middle East.”
In winning medals in highly competitive categories such as TV campaign of the year, print campaign of the year, outdoor campaign of the year, and integrated campaign of the year, JWT asserted its dominance of the awards and firmly established its reputation for developing high-impact and world-class creative work across its regional network.
JWT’s Dubai office was the jurors’ unanimous choice in the outdoor campaign category, winning the gold medal for its work for Dubai One channel.
The panel of judges was impressed with the creativity and originality of the artwork, as well as with the impact it had on delivering the desired exposure and top-of-mind awareness for the client.
The agency also received two silver medals for a TV campaign produced for Domino’s Pizza by its Riyadh office, as well as for an integrated campaign executed for Heineken by its Beirut office. JWT Bahrain contributed a bronze with a print campaign for Zayani Motors, and JWT Dubai added another bronze with its outdoor campaign for the Dubai Autism Centre.
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