Cannes Lions ’22: India’s best ever haul of 47 Lions; Dentsu Creative India bags ‘Agency Of the Year’

Cannes Lions ’22: India’s best ever haul of 47 Lions; Dentsu Creative India bags ‘Agency Of the Year’

Dentsu Creative and Leo Burnett seize the country’s first set of Titanium Lions on the final day.

Cannes Lions

Mumbai: India concluded its Cannes Lions campaign on a historic high with its best ever haul of 47 metals, which includes five Grand Prix and two Titanium Lions, in another first for the country. Dentsu Creative walked away with ‘Agency Of the Year’ trophy with an unprecedented three Grand Prix wins in a stunning performance by the agency at this year’s International Festival of Creativity.

It is also the first time that India has bagged five Grand Prix in one year at the annual Fest. The award-winning campaigns are ‘The Unfiltered History Tour’ by Dentsu Creative which clinched three, and ‘The Killer Pack’ by VMLY&R, and ‘The Missing Chapter’ by Leo Burnett, which won one each. 

India’s first-ever Titanium Lion wins came for Dentsu Creative’s ‘The Unfiltered History Tour’ and Ogilvy’s ‘Shah Rukh Khan - My Ad’ campaigns. 

A total of sixteen campaigns won at the prestigious fest this year. The top three award-winning campaigns were Dentsu Creative’s ‘The Unfiltered History Tour’ with a total of 12 metals, FCB’s ‘Chatpat’ with eight metals, and Ogilvy’s ‘Shah Rukh Khan - My Ad’ with five metals.  

India’s previous best at Cannes Lions was in 2017, when it took home 40 metals. 

Here’s the lowdown on the country’s overall performance at Cannes Level Festival of Creativity 2022:

The maximum metals were grabbed by FCB including three gold, five silver, and 6 bronze. It was followed by Dentsu Creative with three Grand Prix-haul along with one Gold, four Silver, three Bronze, and one Titanium Lions. On the third spot was VMLY&R + VMLY&R Commerce with seven metals including one Grand Prix, one Gold, four Silver, and one Bronze metal. 

The most number of Lions came under the Radio & Audio (6), Media (5), and Brand Experience & Activation, Direct, and Radio & Audio (4 each) categories.  

There were 121 shortlists this year from a total of 921 entries sent.

Reacting to the agency’s historic performance, Dentsu Creative CEO India Amit Wadhwa said, “Honestly, I am speechless right now, so it is a challenge to find words and new adjectives to express how I feel. To say this is historic almost seems like an understatement. When you start the week with a Grand Prix, then add two more along the week besides a Gold, four Silvers and three Bronze, you feel it’s a dream run. Then you end with a Titanium and it is that ‘top of the world’ feeling. But guess what this is not where it ends, we are ‘The Agency of the Year!!’ 

He further added, “While we have won what we have, it is also amazing to see all the other agencies from India win big. What a lovely feeling!! We are undeniably proud to be associated with a campaign that takes top honours on a global platform. This indeed fuels the fire of passion and commitment in the team that has relentlessly worked on it. The entire credit goes to each one of them who has been involved, to all our present and ex-colleagues who have worked so hard on the campaign. They are the real winners.”  

Dentsu Creative group chief creative officer India Ajay Gahlaut added, “Winning the “Agency of the Year” is an emotion I cannot even begin to describe. When I used to watch other agencies win the title I often wondered if I ever would get that same honour. What they say is true. Dreams DO come true! I’m over the moon with the Titanium win along with the hat trick of Grand Prix and a whole lot of other metals. Not just me I think no one in the entire Indian ad industry has been part of such a huge haul of Lions ever before. And I do believe we are the first full-service Indian agency to win the title of “Agency of the Year”. I doff my hat to the entire team responsible for the Unfiltered History Tours. Those who are with us now and those who have moved on. Congratulations all. For now, it’s party time!”

Ogilvy India, which got India one of the elusive Titanium Lions for  its 'Shah Rukh Khan - My Ad' campaign created for Mondelez India also shared its elation. 

Ogilvy chairman global creative & executive chairman India Piyush Pandey said: "I am delighted that the people's choice is also the jury's choice. I am very proud of the team that worked on it."

Ogilvy India chief creative officers Sukesh Nayak, Harshad Rajadhyaksha & Kainaz Karmakar said: "This is a piece of work that has found love with the masses in India and we are grateful that the idea has also found love with the hugely accomplished Titanium Jury at Cannes.  This is a salute to our brave Ogilvy Team, Mondelez India Team, Tech partner - Rephrase, Content partner - Pack Films and Media partner - Wavemaker."

The work also won the agency a Gold Lion in the Creative Data category, and another Gold Lion and a Bronze Lion in the Direct category as well. 

Furthermore, the same campaign also won a Silver Lion in the Tech-led Brand Experiences category.