News & Views

Cannes Lions / Innovation Winners

by Patrick Jeffrey

A new kind of metal called Humanium has won the Innovation Grand Prix at the 2017 Cannes Lions. The initiative, by aid organisation IM Swedish Development, turns recycled gun metal into a commodity that brands can buy to show their support for ending armed violence. You can read the full story here

In an interview with Contagious, BBG Ventures’ managing partner and the jury president, Susan Lyne, said: ‘Everything that won an award did something extraordinary, but what made Humanium so special was the holistic thinking about an entire new business – from the brand creation to the business model, supply chain and execution.’

Lyne also said that the Innovation category is particularly hard to judge, ‘because you get such a range of entries – from Google, Apple and Baidu who have billions of dollars to spend on creating new products through to small startups that are literally trying to build something with hundreds of thousands of dollars and hope.’

To solve this problem, Lyne and the judging panel set out specific criteria around use of technology, creativity, ingenuity and impact. They judged campaigns based on whether they had created a unique technological innovation or whether they used technology to advance a brand message in a novel way.

Two Gold Lions were also awarded in the Innovation category, One for Google’s Tiltbrush VR experience, and another for Stockholm Pride, which created a pride march within the video game Grand Theft Auto.

Commenting on the importance of the Innovation category, Lyne said: ‘This shows where the industry is going rather than where it has been. The fact that it exists means that every agency is looking at their work in a different way. In that sense, it’s become a trigger for much more important things happening in the agency world.’

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