MANILA, PHILIPPINES – The country’s most respected creative and media leaders gathered on July 25, 2019 at the Rizal Ballroom of Makati Shangri-La for the 22nd annual Agency of the Year Awards. Dubbed as the “Award That Matters”, the honors celebrate the best performing creative, media, digital and activation agencies as well as audio, film and post production houses that rose to the top in 2018. These firms were also judged based on their creative work, management of business, market performance, industry leadership, and community service.
Year after year, what makes AOY shine bright in its own light is its focus on the people behind award-winning campaigns and community-moving activations. And for these already celebrated agencies and prod houses, what makes these AOY plates so special is its recognition of hard work, ingenuity and even community service.
The evening opened with David Guerrero, Chairman of 4As Philippines and BBDO Guerrero Chairman and CCO, formally addressing the country’s creative leaders in the room by recounting the success the year has given to Philippine creativity. He also gave some amazing news on 4As Philippines being the official representative for some of the industry’s most sought after competitions and festivals:
“These will be great opportunities for the country to get up to speed to best practices in the industry and really show that creativity means business.”
— adobo magazine (@adobomagazine) July 25, 2019
Then, the awards officially commenced with the first award of the evening. The Activation Excellence Award for Creative and Effectiveness Plate was given to Leo Burnett Manila, while Ogilvy Philippines accepted the Activation Excellence for Execution.
Under the Digital Excellence category, TBWA\ Santiago Mangada Puno bagged 2 Plates – Digital Creative & Effectiveness, and Digital Media. The Digital Excellence for Digital Production award was then granted to Leo Burnett Manila, its 2nd award of the night.
Honoring the best production houses in the country, the evening recognized Sound Design with its fifth Production Excellence for Audio plate; Riot with the Production Excellence for Post award for the third year in a row; and Film Pabrika Inc. with Excellence for Film.
In the world of Media, two agencies have emerged for the Media Excellence awards: Initiative Philippines bags the Media Excellence for Best in Media Creativity plate on its first year launched in the Philippine market, while MediaCom Philippines sweep the category with the Best in Management of Business and the major Overall Media Excellence Award.
BBDO Guerrero was then recognized with the Best in Management of Business, the Best in Market Performance was granted to Publicis JimenezBasic and TBWA\ Santiago Mangada Puno received an additional two plates for its astounding work in 2018 with the Best in Industry Leadership and Best in Creative Awards.
Before getting to the biggest and most-anticipated awards of the night, Norman Agatep, Chairman of the 4As Philippines 22nd Agency of the Year Awards, gave his piece on what this year’s recognitions mean to the industry and the country’s creative community.
“Doing something does not matter as much as doing something with love and passion.” pic.twitter.com/naNRtA189P
— adobo magazine (@adobomagazine) July 25, 2019
He then passed on the torch to Portia Catuira, naming her the next leader to take on the task of the 23rd 4As Philippines Agency of the Year Awards as next year’s Chairperson.
The two remaining major awards were then given out to two agencies that have performed exceptionally in the last year:
Local creative agency Seven A.D. took its fifth Independent Agency of the Year plate, a monumental milestone as the agency celebrates its 10th anniversary.
Another back-to-back winner is TBWA\ Santiago Mangada Puno which has made AOY history with its 8th Agency of the Year Award – the highest total of times an agency has received the title.
See the full list of winners and finalists here.
It is also worth to mention that rookie agency GIGIL has earned 4 finalist spots on its first year participating. This includes Finalist, Best in Creative; Finalist, Digital Excellence for Creative and Effectiveness;Finalist, Best in Market Performance;Finalist, Activation Excellence for Creative and Effectiveness. This makes for a booming infancy stage for the agency that’s less than two years old with already a long list of awards under its belt.
In total, TBWA\ Santiago Mangada has received 5 plates for the exceptional work it has created in the last year, and 5 finalist spots for Finalist, Activation Excellence for Creative and Effectiveness; Finalist, Activation Excellence for Execution Excellence; Finalist, Production Excellence for Film; Finalist, Best in Market Performance; Best in Management of Business. Jimmy Santiago, Co-Founder and President of TBWA\ SMP, shared with us his thoughts on the win:
“We thank our clients who allow us to come up with disruptive ideas, because ‘disruption’ is our philosophy. We make sure that nothing that comes out of the agency is so-so, we make sure we inject a little “twist” to anything we do. It’s good because our clients are very supportive of our disruptive way of thinking. And that’s how we excel in creativity, as well as making sure that the brands we push is selling in the marketplace. The combined power of creativity and effectiveness is the one that brings us this honor.”
Lastly, we spoke with the man behind the evening’s success, Mr. Norman Agatep (Chairman, 22nd AOY), and discussed what this year’s awards represent. He shared that essentially, the purpose of the show is to celebrate the Philippine creative community. However, on its 22nd year, inclusivity was given utmost importance as the board decided to open the Agency of the Year category to include local (or independent) agencies that have performed at the same level as that of the multi-nationals, which was not a possibility in previous years. In revisiting the rules he shared:
“It seems as if when we’re evaluating the rules, there must be a way to be more inclusive and to have more people who are involved in the industry to be able to participate in the AOY. That was a running theme as we were evaluating last year’s rules and updating them for this year.”
Revisit the evening of celebrating creativity below: