Ogilvy First SA Agency to win TV Grand Prix at Prestigious London International Award

JOHANNESBURG, 9 November 2010 – Ogilvy Johannesburg was awarded one of the highest honours at the 25th London International Awards (LIA) last night, winning a Grand Prix in the TV category for its much-lauded Selinah commercial for HIV/Aids relief organization The Topsy Foundation.

The LIA sets out to honour new ideas in Advertising, Design and Digital Media and this year attracted a record 13,562 entries from 79 countries. This is the first time in the history of the awards that a South African agency has won a Grand Prix for TV, arguably the most highly anticipated category of all.

The winning ad, produced by Egg Films and directed by Kim Geldenhuys, features the true story of Selinah, an Aids sufferer who experiences the ravaging effects of her disease being reversed over a period of 90 days through the administration of anti-retrovirals (ARVs). On top of the Grand Prix, the ad also picked up a gold LIA for original music.

Since it aired earlier this year, Selinah has garnered critical acclaim both locally and internationally, winning the first Gold Cannes Lion Award for a South African agency in over a decade. In the last month alone, the campaign also picked up a Gold Loerie and Gold Pendoring, demonstrating its cross-cultural appeal.

The remarkable piece is one of many developed by Ogilvy Johannesburg over its decade-long partnership with the Topsy Foundation, and serves as an illustration of the power of advertising to do good. “Since the launch of the campaign earlier this year, we have seen an unprecedented influx of support from donors, and the number of patients requesting ARV treatment has also risen sharply, says Sylvia de Jager, Executive Director at the Topsy Foundation. “We are humbled that Selinah’s story of hope and recovery has also captured the hearts of an international audience.

Ogilvy Johannesburg’s Fran Luckin, Executive Creative Director, said after the awards: “The fact that a campaign that is so close to all our hearts has had such a fantastic year is incredibly rewarding. This was a labor of love for all of us, and it wouldn’t have been possible without the dedication of the production crew, who filmed Selinah every day for three months, and the commitment of the creative team who saw their vision literally come alive before their eyes.

“This award is another testament to the fact that South African creativity can compete with the best in the world, continues Luckin. “But most importantly, it demonstrates yet again that creativity and effectiveness can go hand in hand.”

Ogilvy South Africa
Established in 1984, Ogilvy South Africa has been one of the largest leading advertising and communications groups in South Africa for over 25 years.  It currently employs over 700 staff across 12 companies.  It provides a diverse and integrated range of services to clients including advertising, digital and interactive, activation, promotions, internal marketing, CRM, shopper marketing, PR, channel planning and relationship marketing. It is at the forefront of a 360 degree integration solution, with best-of-breed specialist skills in every aspect of the marketing mix. Ogilvy South Africa clients include a mix of local and multinational companies. The mission is to build magnetic brands — which in turn help clients build their businesses. The Brand Liberation philosophy of using breakthrough ideas to release the potential that exists in brands is Ogilvy’s raison d’etre, and is the cornerstone of the agency. Follow Ogilvy South Africa on Twitter at @OgilvySAFacebookFlickr and Vimeo