Saatchi & Saatchi ME Wins UAE Young Lions Digital Competition 2022

Rebecca Ann Menezes and Eduardo Cesar from Saatchi & Saatchi Middle East win gold at the UAE Young Lions Digital Competition 2022.


The 19th edition of the esteemed UAE Young Lions Digital Competition, hosted by Motivate Media Group and Motivate Val Morgan – the official UAE representatives of the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity, took place on Saturday, 26th March 2022.

This year’s competition took place online and witnessed participation from 18 teams across 10 creative agencies. The judging and awards ceremony followed on Wednesday, 30th March 2022, with Rebecca Ann Menezes and Eduardo Cesar from Saatchi & Saatchi Middle East winning Gold.

Rebecca and Eduardo will move on to represent the UAE at the International Young Lions Digital Competition, which will take place online between 25th – 27th May 2022. The gold winning duo will also receive a full week delegate pass and an all-expense paid trip to attend the in-person Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity in June 2022.


Gold Winners - Rebecca Ann Menezes & Eduardo Cesar


Gold Winner Young Lions 2022


Ana Julia De Oliveira and Jarrad Pitts from Impact BBDO bagged Silver, while Mayar Essawy and Francesco Negri from FP7 McCann won Bronze.




The jury panel for this year’s competition comprised of Louise Kotze Hussein (BPG Group), Giorgia Fattoracci (Leo Burnett), Bruno Barbosa (Saatchi & Saatchi), Yasmina Boustani (Impact BBDO), Rafael Augusto (Publicis Middle East), Andre Marchesi (Science & Sunshine), Claudia Canas (FP7 McCann), Muhammad Ali (Momentum MENA), Vivek Kukreti (Precise Communications) and Vijay Simon (You Experience).

This year’s client brief was from Goumbook, the leading social enterprise promoting sustainable living and green practices in the UAE and beyond since 2010, and the competition was sponsored by Getty Images.

Participating teams were challenged to develop a creative and innovative digital led campaign for Goumbook’s latest initiative  ‘Save the Butts – Waste to Value’ – the first sustainability initiative in the UAE that adopts a circular Economy approach to environmental pollution, that converts cigarette butts into a value-added material. The campaign goal was to raise awareness on the littering of cigarette butts and its negative impact on the environment, with a focus on promoting the initiative to corporates/companies and encouraging them to get involved.

Speaking at the online awards ceremony, Tatiana Antonelli, Founder of Goumbook, stated: ”Trillions of cigarettes are smoked annually, making cigarette butts the most common type of litter in the world. Due to the composition of butts being mainly plastic and toxic substances, this waste carries a very harmful risk for the environment and for living organisms, including humans. The ‘Save The Butts’ campaign aims to raise awareness and showcase alternative solutions to landfilling and incineration. We have identified technology to properly recycle this kind of waste and promote the recovery of materials in line with a circular economy approach and sustainable development. We welcome the local community, including individuals and businesses, to join the initiative, collect cigarette butts and help transform waste into value.”

Ian Fairservice – Managing Partner, Motivate Media Group, said: “After a stellar performance from the standout up-and-comers of the industry, it was particularly difficult to narrow down the top submissions. In the end there had to be a winning team – I want to congratulate everyone who participated, but especially the winners Rebecca and Eduardo from Saatchi & Saatchi ME, who I’m sure will be great ambassadors from the UAE during this year’s Cannes Lions event.”


The UAE Young Lions Digital Competition – hosted by Motivate Media Group and Motivate Val Morgan, supported by Getty Images, aims to unveil the brightest creative minds from across the UAE, and is part of the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity – the world’s biggest celebration of creativity in communications. 2022 will witness the return of the annual festival and will take place between 20th – 24th June at the Palais des Festivals et des Congrès in Cannes, France.



UAE Wins 21 Lions at The Cannes Lions Festival 2021

UAE creative agencies bag two gold, six silver and thirteen bronze lions at the recently concluded virtual Cannes Lions Festival 2021!


The Cannes Lions Festival 2021 drew to a close on Friday 25th June, which for the first time in history – due to the ongoing pandemic, took place online via the LIONS Live platform.

The UAE bagged 21 Lions in total for 2020 and 2021 – 2 Gold, 6 Silver and 13 Bronze Lions, across multiple categories, including newly introduced categories such as Sustainable Development Goals, Creative eCommerce and Creative Strategy.

This year’s winning agencies from the UAE included Impact BBDO, Memac Ogilvy, FP7 McCann, TBWA\RAAD, Mullenlowe MENA and VMLY&R.


UAE Winners of Cannes Lions Festival 2021


Addressing the Cannes Lions Live audience during the Awards Show, Simon Cook, Managing Director, LIONS, said, “Over the past five days we’ve seen the return of the global creative benchmark, and the winning work that sets the bar for the entire industry. We’ve seen inspirational talks, taken part in learning programmes, celebrated creative excellence through our Award Shows and Debriefs – and come together as a community, united in the belief that creativity has the power to build business, shape society, and change the world for the better.”

2021 also witnessed 10 leading advertising and media professionals from the UAE represent the country as jury members at this year’s Festival.

Paul Shearer (Chief Creative Officer, Impact BBDO Dubai), Jennifer Fischer (Chief Innovation Officer, TBWA\RAAD) and Dida Atassi (Design Director, Accenture Interactive Middle East) were part of the Awards jury across Industry Craft, Innovations and Design categories respectively, and joining them as Shortlist jury members were Asad Rehman (Director Media and Digital Transformation, Unilever MENA) for Media, Amy Brill (Head of PR, M&C Saatchi) for PR, Vidya Manmohan (Founder and Creative Chairwoman, V4 Advertising LLC) for Brand Experience & Activation, Serena Abi Aad (Head of Content, Havas Dubai) for Film, Akanksha Goel (Founder & CEO, Socialize) for Social & Influencer, Alex Pineda (Creative Director, TBWA\RAAD) for Direct and Fabio Silveira (General Manager, Havas Dubai) for Outdoor.


Cannes Lions 2021 UAE Jury Members


Running parallel to the Cannes Lions Festival are the Young Lions Competitions (for young creative below the age of 30 years) and Roger Hatchuel Academy (a mentorship programme for university students in the field of creative communications).


YLDC 2021 UAE ParticipantsRoger Hatchuel Academy Recipient and


Having won Gold at the UAE Young Lions Digital Competition 2021, Moemen Metwally and Fernando Montero from Memac Ogilvy Dubai represented the UAE at the International Young Lions Digital Competition.

Kamilla Bakytova – a student at American University in Dubai (AUD), pursuing a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Visual Communication (majoring in advertising), was selected to represent the UAE at the prestigious Roger Hachuel Academy.

As the official UAE representatives of the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity, Motivate Media Group and Motivate Val Morgan warmly congratulates all winning agencies, jury members and both Young Lions and Roger Hatchuel Academy participants from the UAE, and look forward to yet another successful Festival in 2022.



Sources: Cannes Lions and Campaign Middle East