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Goafest 2011: Of reinvention and inspiration

By afaqs! news bureau , afaqs!, Mumbai | In Advertising | February 11, 2011
With added initiatives, the Indian advertising industry's summer celebration will be extended to a five-day fiesta this year; the judging process has also been made smoother and more transparent.

It is time again for the Indian advertising industry's gala celebration, Goafest, organised by Advertising Agencies Association of India (AAAI) and The Advertising Club Bombay (ACB).

With a new theme and new initiatives, Goafest 2011 has been extended to a five-day event, from April 05-09. This year, the fraternity will gather at the Zuri White Sands, a five-star resort in Varca, South Goa.

Besides the fun and frolic, the festival's objective is to inspire new ideas. Therefore, the theme this year is, "Ideas are all around us. Can you spot one?" The campaign for the festival is being designed by Euro RSCG India.

Goafest 2011 will be kicked off with a unique event in association with Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI), featuring 100 young creative professionals. The chosen bunch will be required to conceive and execute installation art, based on the theme, "Creativity with a conscience". The final pieces will be displayed in the Ad Village for the duration of the festival.

Subhash Kamath, managing partner, BBH India, who is also on the board of governors of ASCI says, "It is time we engage not just the consumer, but the industry, too, which needs to be conscious of creating responsible advertising."

The Advertising Conclave will be held on April 07. The topic for this year is, "Preparing the profession for the new decade". It will be led by RK Swamy BBDO's chairman and managing director, Sundar Swamy.

The Abby Awards will be spread over two days -- the Media Awards on April 08, followed by the Creative Awards on April 09. The creative and media Abbys will be managed by the Awards Governing Council (AGC), chaired by Shashi Sinha, chief executive officer, LodestarUM.

The AGC is a nine-member committee comprising Swamy from RK Swamy BBDO, Arvind Sharma, chairman and chief executive officer, Leo Burnett, Sunil Lulla, managing director and chief executive officer, Times Global Broadcasting, Ajay Chandwani, director, Percept, Ajay Kakkar, chief marketing officer, financial services, Aditya Birla Group, Suman Srivastava, ex-CEO, Euro RSCG India, Nagesh Alai, president, AAAI, and Bhaskar Das, president, ACB.
In a bid to avoid the mistakes of last year, the judging process has been revised to make it more transparent.

This year, the judging will take place in two stages. In the initial stage, the entries would be shortlisted. After a week's gap and a few days before the festival, the finalists will be selected.

"We know the problems of the past. Our clear mandate is to win the credibility back. What went wrong in the past was not a conceptual, but a detailing issue," says Sinha.

Chandwani of Percept tells afaqs! that there haven't been too many changes in the number of categories for awards this year. He adds that he expects entries for verticals such as digital, design and craft to increase further this year.

An added feature this year would be The Festival of Media, Montreux, which will specially host two of its categories -- 'Best Communication Strategy' and 'Best Contribution by a Media Owner' -- at specially reduced entry fees. The winner and runners-up of these categories will be fast-tracked into the Festival of Media finals.

Among the confirmed speakers at the seminars this year are Amos Pizzey, president and creative director, Talent House, Peter Scott, CEO, Engine, Michael Wall, CEO, Lowe and Partners WW, Susan Clark, CMO, The Economist, Laurie Coots, CMO, TBWA, Shailesh Rao, president JAPAC, Google, Charlie Crowe, founder, The Festival of Media and Brian J Terkelsen, president, LiquidThread, Starcom MediaVest Group.

Lynn de Souza, chairman and CEO, LMG and chairperson, Goafest 2011, says in a press statement, "Goafest 2011 will provide a unique learning environment for creative, marketing and media practitioners and the opportunity to recognise and award excellent work from all over the country. We hope to take this event onto newer heights and bring it at par with other international events."
Online registration for the festival will start from February 21. The delegate fee has been fixed at Rs 11,000 per head for professionals above the age of 30, and Rs 5,500 per head for those under 30. The fee for international delegates has been set at Rs 25,000 per head.

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