The organisers of the 56th Cannes Lions International Advertising Festival have announced the launch of PR Lions in 2009. PR Lions will honour the creative use of reputation management by the building and preservation of trust and understanding between individuals, businesses or organisations and their publics. Categories will broadly include Sector Related PR, Product & Service and Technique.
Entries will be rewarded for Strategy, Creativity & Originality, Execution and Results. The winners of the first ever PR Lions and Grand Prix will be honoured in Cannes on Monday 22 nd of June 2009 alongside the Direct and Promo Lions winners.
Lord Tim Bell, Chairman of Chime Communications, will chair the inaugural PR Lions jury. During a distinguished career he helped found the Saatchi & Saatchi advertising agency in 1970. As International Chairman, he took Saatchi & Saatchi into its position as the biggest worldwide agency network in 1981.
He successfully ran the election campaign for the Conservative Party in 1979 and again in 1983, and it was to him that Mrs Thatcher turned when the 1987 General Election seemed in doubt. He became Deputy Chairman of The Lowe Group in 1985 and he subsequently bought out the communications division, Lowe Bell Communications in 1989.
He is now Chairman and a major shareholder in Chime Communications Plc, the holding company listed on the London Stock Exchange, which owns Bell Pottinger Communications (formerly Lowe Bell), and its sister advertising agency VCCP.
He is one of the best known figures in the UK communications industry and advises the chairmen and chief executives of many of Britain’s leading companies and organisations, as well as foreign heads of state and international business leaders and politicians.
Welcoming the appointment, Philip Thomas, Festival CEO, said, “Launching PR at Cannes has been on our radar for quite a while and as with any new category we introduce, it takes time to prepare to the standard we expect and is expected of us. The time is now right and we are extremely honoured to have Lord Tim Bell chair the first PR Lions jury. An authority on PR with a long and distinguished career, he will bring valuable knowledge and guidance to the inaugural PR Lions competition.”
Lord Bell commenting on his role said, “I am honoured to chair the first ever PR jury. This new category will greatly enhance the celebration of communications that is Cannes Lions and will further elevate the recognition of reputation management within our industry.”