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Cannes Lions announce record-breaking award entries for 2016

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At the close of entries, Cannes Lions confirmed that a record 43,101 (+7%) submissions have been received for the 2016 festival! Overall there’s been growth in 18 of the 24 Lions categories, with standout expansion of the Product Design Lions (+92%) and notable increases in awards associated with the Festival’s three specialist streams: Lions Entertainment, Lions Innovation and Lions Health. The Entertainment Lions (formerly Branded Content & Entertainment) grew by 32% to 1,843, while the new Entertainment Lions for Music attracted 637 entries in their debut year. The two awards linked to Lions Innovation have also grown.

Such strong entry numbers are a powerful sign of growing creative confidence”

Launched last year, entries into the Creative Data Lions have risen by 16% and there was a leap of 69% in the Innovation Lions, echoing the continuing explosion of data and tech-led creativity. The Pharma Lions and the Health & Wellness Lions have also grown significantly (+35% and +42% respectively) with a total number of 2,607 entries, marking a rather dramatic growth. Other trends included strong support for craft. The inaugural Digital Craft Lions received 1,150 entries, Film Craft is up by 5% and the craft categories within other Lions have also surged this year.

These numbers are a reminder that there are ebbs and flows, and that it’s always best to take a long-term view”

Louise Benson, Festival Director of Lions Health, attributes the growth this year to the ethos and impact of the event. She said: “By celebrating life-changing creativity, we’re challenging the norms of a highly regulated industry and accelerating change. Such strong entry numbers are a powerful sign of growing creative confidence.” Lions Festivals Chairman, Terry Savage, added: “We’re seeing evidence that the role of start-ups in the branded communications ecosystem is key, with new businesses and their products not only buoying entries to these two Lions, but driving deep into others as well.”

It’s important that the Lions remain a barometer for the industry, as well as an enduring creative benchmark”

Philip Thomas, CEO of Lions Festivals, said: “We are constantly evaluating every Lion, consulting with the industry to form a view on how they should be structured to reflect the creative landscape and remain relevant. It’s important that the Lions remain a barometer for the industry, as well as an enduring creative benchmark. These numbers are also a reminder that there are ebbs and flows, and that it’s always best to take a long-term view. The Outdoor Lions are just one example of that – a drop last year of 11% prompted commentary about a decline in the sector, but this year we’ve seen a determined bounce-back, with entries rising by 7%.”

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The full count is as follows:

  • Creative Data Lions - 715
  • Creative Effectiveness Lions - 109
  • Cyber Lions - 2886
  • Design Lions - 2,857
  • Digital Craft Lions - 1,150
  • Direct Lions - 3,097
  • Entertainment Lions - 1,843
  • Entertainment Lions for Music - 637
  • Film Lions - 2,801
  • Film Craft Lions - 2,315
  • Glass: The Lion for Change - 155
  • Health & Wellness Lions - 2,024
  • Innovation Lions - 381
  • Integrated Lions - 279
  • Media Lions - 2,986
  • Mobile Lions - 1,259
  • Outdoor Lions - 5,365
  • Pharma Lions - 583
  • PR Lions - 2,224
  • Print & Publishing Lions - 3,775
  • Product Design Lions - 538
  • Promo & Activation Lions - 3,458
  • Radio Lions - 1,410
  • Titanium Lions - 254

TOTAL - 43,101

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For more on Cannes Lions 2016, keep your browsers pointed to Creativepool, as we'll be on site from next week with all the gossip, all the major announcements, and all the most exciting insights from the gathered industry bigwigs, celebrities and ad land up and comers.

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