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Awards: Paulus becomes the most successful independent South Korean agency at the 2022 Cannes Lions

SEOUL, SOUTH KOREA — The Seoul-based creative agency Paulus has won a total of five trophies at the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity 2022. The creative agency’s list of accolades includes two Bronze Lions, two Silver Lions, and one Titanium Lion, which is considered the highest honor at the award show. It is the first time in nine years that a South Korean advertising agency has won a Titanium Lion as Cheil Worldwide won the Titanium Lion for its “Bridge of Life” campaign in 2013. The impressive haul of trophies makes Paulus the most successful independent South Korean agency at this year’s Cannes Lions.

Paulus developed and produced the Titanium-winning “Dot Pad” campaign in collaboration with Serviceplan Munich, the German advertising powerhouse. The “Dot Pad” case is the world’s first advertising campaign for a smart tactile graphics display. In addition to winning the Titanium Lion, the “Dot Pad” campaign collected a Bronze Lion in the Digital Craft category.


“I have always felt that our independent Korean agency had the team, talent, and skill to articulate narratives that can resonate around the world and our success at this year’s Cannes Lions is a resounding vindication of that feeling,” said Saffaan Qadir, the creative director at Paulus and project lead on the “Dot Pad” campaign. “I am especially proud of winning the Titanium Lion because it is in collaboration with our brilliant long-term partners at Serviceplan Munich.

Together with digital agency Innored Seoul, Paulus submitted Maeil’s “Greeting Milk” campaign to Cannes Lions as well. The campaign won a Silver Lion in the Brand Experience & Activation category and a Bronze Lion in the PR category. The campaign is a creative way to tackle the heartbreaking phenomenon of “unattended death” affecting the elderly Koreans in single-person households. Regular milk carton deliveries enable delivery drivers to check-in with the elderly and alert the local community center if milk cartons are not taken from the milk pouches. By winning two trophies at Cannes Lions, “Greeting Milk” became the best-performing single campaign conducted by an independent creative agency in Korea. Importantly, the campaign’s success at Cannes Lions is a rare achievement for mid-sized companies involved in ESG related brand activations at a global advertising festival.

In addition to the “Dot Pad” and “Greeting Milk” campaigns, Paulus brought home a Silver Lion in the Brand Experience & Activation category for “Dot Go,” the first customizable object recognition app for the visually impaired. With this award pushing the agency’s tally to five Lions, Paulus became the most decorated Korean creative agency at Cannes Lions 2022.

Reflecting on the company’s historic performance, Paulus Chief Creative Officer Thomas Hongtack Kim said, “By winning five trophies at Cannes Lions including the prestigious Titanium Lion, our independent creative agency is at last under the global spotlight. Transformative, award-winning work from around the world has always had brilliant creative at its heart and I am glad to be with a Korean independent agency that can go toe to toe with giants of the industry on the world stage. As the independent agency is able to maintain agile system-operation, it has much opportunity to experiment something brave than other gigantic agencies. That’s why Paulus is now foremost in Korea with swift action of launching metaverse business. Now we compete with IT companies as well. In a word, the rise of independent agency leads to the diverse creative eco-system.”

For Paulus CEO Kyungsin Kim, success at Cannes Lions is only the beginning. “Cannes Lions was a buzz with discussions of Web3, blockchain, and solutions to global problems couched in the metaverse. This represents a new paradigm of brand communication which is subtly moving beyond the logic of SDG and ESG related interventions targeting social problems.”

His company’s ambition is to extend its influence into this new domain of communication. “Paulus launched its own metaverse platform called ‘Re-Be World’ at the end of 2021 to bring the company’s creative expertise into the world of new and emerging media. Our goal is to maintain excellence in craft and creative storytelling, and to win awards for work in the emerging landscape of new media at Cannes Lions 2023,” he furthered.

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