Winners of Transform Awards MENA revealed

The first winners of the inaugural MENA edition of Europe’s Transform Awards were announced last night in a ceremony held at the JW Marriott Marquis Dubai, with sixteen regional ad, branding and creative agencies honoured with the highly-contested ‘Best in Class’ titles.

“We’re absolutely delighted with the response to the first Transform Awards in the region,” says Andrew Thomas, Founder of Transform and Managing Director of Cravenhill Publishing. “There is a tremendous amount of work in the rebranding, repositioning and brand transformation space and we see huge potential for growth in the coming years. As we’ve seen from the awards, the level of talent in the region is quite outstanding, and we seriously hope that the Transform Awards will set a brand industry benchmark to take it to the next level.”

Reviewing and evaluating the categories were Flavia Barbat, Editor-in-Chief of Branding Magazine; Patrick Lloyd-Bradley, Brand and Marketing Communications Director for Averda International; Ammar Elkurdi, Brand Manager for Volvo Cars, and Stephen McCallion, Global Head of Marketing and Communications, Abu Dhabi National Energy Company.

Fellow judge, Syed Abdul Karim Tanveer, Director of Brand Experience at Mobily adds, “The Transform Awards are a great platform to celebrate the best from the world of branding. It is a wonderful opportunity for talent in the MENA region to be recognised for their work. This is key to inspiring others and helping the industry to evolve and mature.”

The categories and winners of the Tranform Awards MENA 2014 included – Best Use of a Visual Property – Seef Mall and Unisono; Best External Stakeholder Relations During a Rebrand – Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank and StartJG; Best Internal Communication During a Rebrand – Dubai Airports and StartJG; Best Implementation of a Rebrand – Gama Aviation and Brash Brands; Best Creative Strategy – Milaha and Bellwether; Best Brand Evolution – du; Best Strategic/Creative Development of a New Brand – Mubadala and Omnia; Best Rebrand to Reflect Changed Mission/Values/Positioning – Intel and Red Peak; Best Brand Consolidation – Toyota (Al-Futtaim Motors) and Bellwether; Best Rebrand of a Digital Property – Xplored for GardaWorld and Bladonmore (Middle East); Best Visual Identity from a Charity/NGO/NFP – Doha Film Institute; Best Visual Identity from the Technology, Media and Telecommunications Sector – MixFM and Turquoise Branding; Best Visual Identity from the Financial Services Sector – Emirates RE and Omnia; Best Visual Identity from the Industrial and Basic Materials Sector – Milaha and Bellwether; Best Visual Identity from the Property Sector – Mubadala and Brash Brands; Best Visual Identity from the Retail Sector – 1915 by Seddiqi and Brash Brands; Best Overall Visual Identity – Mihala; Best Overall Visual Identity Bellwether for its work with Milaha, and Grand Prix – du.

Alongside the awards, Transform MENA held a full day conference attended by branding and communications professionals from the MENA region. The conference included a lineup of sessions discussing the most successful rebranding, repositioning and brand transformation projects globally and in the MENA, and saw the launch of Transform Magazine, a global publication on brand development.

Transform Awards extends entry deadline

Due to the extensive response from agencies, the inaugural Transform Awards MENA, which is to be held at the JW Mariott Marquis Hotel Dubai on June 2, 2014, has extended the deadline for entries to April 3, 2014. This announcement comes at the same time as the international lineup of guest speakers for the Transform Conference is revealed.
The lineup of key speakers include Steve Ridgway, former CEO of Virgin Atlantic, who will discuss his experience with a company that became one of the world’s best-loved brands, Wael Allahou, from petrochemical company EQUATE, who will give a talk on employee engagement and change management, and Bruno Maag and Ahmed Kandil, who will go head-to-head offering insights on calligraphy vs. typography, how fonts can bring brands to life and how typographical issues spell trouble for companies that ignore cultural differences.
“The response we have had to the Transform Awards MENA and the interest from agencies who want to be a part of it has been phenomenal,” says Andrew Thomas, Founder of Transform and Managing Director, Cravenhill Publishing. “We’re absolutely delighted with the enthusiasm and the energy, which makes it very easy for us to say ‘yes’ to an extended deadline of April 3rd. It speaks volumes about the depth of branding and positioning in this part of the world when you realise that the interest has been across the entire region, rather than just focused on the GCC, which is exactly what we were hoping for.”
Liz Foggitt, Publishing and Events Manager, Cravenhill Publishing adds, “The Transform Conferences have always been hugely successful, thanks to the guest speakers and the delegates whose experiences contribute just as much to the sessions. At this year’s MENA event, we have some great industry gurus as well as some slightly off the wall workshops, which will make people think twice about what they may already take for granted. As well as the deep industry insights, its also going to be a real eye opener and a lot of fun.”

Europe’s Transform Awards to debut in Middle East

Europe’s revered Transform Awards Programme is launching its inaugural Transform Awards MENA, to be held in Dubai in June 2014. The event, which until now has been held exclusively in London, is Europe’s only awards dedicated to creative agencies’ rebranding work. But, with the expanding number of prestigious ad and branding agencies in the Middle East, Cravenhill Publishing, the awards organisers, has broadened its reach to the MENA region.

“There is obviously an immense amount of rebranding, repositioning and brand transformation talent in the Middle East and North Africa and Transform Awards MENA is an excellent platform to celebrate that,” says Andrew Thomas, Founder of Transform, and Managing Director, Cravenhill Publishing.“The European Transform Awards are seen as a very real assessment of best practice, creativity, strategy, implementation and effectiveness and I’m sure the event here in Dubai will carry equal kudos. It is an award every agency will want to have in their cabinet.”