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Day 1 in Cannes

by Hugh Fitzhardinge, 11 June 2014

I’m at the first ever Lions Health. A completely new show for Cannes that acknowledges work in the Pharma and Health & Wellness categories.

On the Pharma category jury I’m sitting alongside eight other judges from USA, India, Brazil, Hong Kong and the UK. I’m humbled to be talking to a few legends of the industry like Bruce Rooke from GSW in the States. The size and scale of their business makes me feel gob-smacked when I consider the modest Australian market. And Andrew Spurgeon from Langland in the UK. An independent that’s been doing amazing work in healthcare over recent years.

At the ‘Judges Welcome Dinner’ last night, hosted by Jeremy Perrott (Global Creative Director of McCann Health), there is a feeling of hushed excitement in the room. I suspect that everyone feels a bit special about being on the first ever Lions Health jury. It’s a big deal and the show acknowledges that healthcare does indeed have its own set of unique challenges and deserves its own awards.

Cannes Chairman Terry Savage tells us that while the festival will last two days for the inaugural Lions Health, in the future he expects it to grow into three, four and five days. The ultimate aim is to get a significant number of clients involved and remind them that creativity and real human insight is critical when communicating to consumers and healthcare professionals about such a crucial topic as health.

It’s a pleasure being here before ‘the real carnage’ begins next week in the streets of Cannes. It’s quiet and a reflective mood prevails. We all know that this is the beginning from which all future Lions Health Festivals will evolve. And when judging starts tomorrow we will have to set the creative bar for all future juries.

— Hugh Fitzhardinge, Creative Director at Ward6


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