Although it is still six months away, Cannes Lions Health is already prepping for its annual June confab. Last week it named the two jury chiefs set to oversee the healthcare advertising awards in health & wellness and pharma. 2019 will mark the sixth year of the Cannes Lions Health creative healthcare advertising show and awards.
Heading up the panel of judges in the pharma category is Robin Shapiro, global president of TBWA\WorldHealth, based in New York. Shapiro served as a Cannes Lions Health healthcare jury member in 2015.
On the health & wellness side, Shaheed Peera, the London-based executive creative director at Publicis LifeBrands, will helm the award panel. Peera served on the Cannes Lions Health pharma jury in 2015 and was part of a Publicis team that won a silver pharma award in 2014.
Peera’s agency parent Publicis—across its entire network of health and traditional agencies—officially sat out last year’s Cannes event after declaring a desire to cut budgets for award shows and rededicate that funding to its digital platform. It called the decision a one-year hiatus and said it would return in 2019, but it still shocked the advertising world. After all, it was one of the largest agency holding companies deciding to forego the industry's biggest creative show.
After Publicis' announcement—along with complaints from other agencies, including WPP Group, about the time and expense required to participate—Cannes revamped the show. It shortened the number of days, trimmed categories and awards, and implemented cost-saving plans for agencies, such as prix fixe lunches and flat taxi fees.
Now referred to as the Health Track within the Cannes Festival, Cannes Lions Health is incorporated into the first two days of the larger show. Before 2018, Lions Health ran for the two days immediately before the main festival's opening.
Cannes described the health program and awards in this year’s press release as celebrating “creativity in branded communications in a highly innovative but fiercely regulated sector which has the unique power to truly change lives.”