The Loeries: Behind 45 years of developing creative excellence
“Every brand and agency works exceptionally hard every year to create work that positively impacts the lives of consumers,” he says.
Winning a Loerie has been the ultimate accolade of creative excellence, as creatives and agencies in the brand marketing, agency and production disciplines throughout Africa & the Middle East, highly value their Loerie wins - a testament to their ability to create impactful communication that creates a difference in the lives of consumers across the region.
In turn, The Loeries work throughout the year to promote creative excellence through various processes and initiatives that include judging, industry dialogue, and supporting the youth.
The judging process
The judging process starts before a single vote has been cast by ensuring the Loeries categories are in line with where the work is being created right now.
“We spend time interrogating our categories and getting these correct. Once they are finalised then we work, as the entire Loeries board and committee, to select the highest calibre judges to be able to judge these panels,” says Sewraj.
He explains that people cannot just randomly pitch up as judges on the panels.
“The Loeries are not a training ground. Jury members must have had judging experience at different awards. We also look for people who have entered and won at The Loeries as they know what it means to be part of it, and for people who are doing amazing work.”
The jury selection is a scientific process. “There is a lot of work and thinking that goes into that entire process itself.”
The Loeries facilitate dialogue with the industry so that topics of importance remain top of mind with the industry.
This is achieved through roadshows across Africa and the Middle East. “We have meetings in South Africa, Nigeria, and Kenya as well as the UAE,” explains Sewraj.
He adds that last year The Loeries also travelled to Egypt and Turkey as well as France where they met the industry at various events and set up dedicated Loeries events. These meetings ensure that the Loeries has a network of some of the best creative minds across the region on standby to be involved with the various initiatives of the organisation.
Developing future industry Leaders
In parallel to this The Loeries develop the future of the industry by building a support ecosystem to bring young people into the industry as well as supporting young people already in the industry by developing their leadership capabilities to lead the industry in the future.
The organisation achieves this through several different programmes.
“Our Loeries Creative Future Scholarship programme supports young people through mentorship and guidance as well as facilitating bursaries and stipends to help cover their study costs.”
The next level of development is the Loeries Youth Committee which is made up of people from across Africa and the Middle East.
“These are people who are already employed in the industry, but under the age of 27, so they are still new entrants but have a deeper understanding of what it is like to work in the industry,” explains Sewraj, “This ensures that we not only mentor them but that we learn what they need to succeed as they grow in the industry.”
45 years of creative excellence
“All of these initiatives and processes come together to ensure that we bring the industry together. It all comes back to our key objective; promoting and growing creative excellence so that it can continue in its ability to benefit economies and touch the lives of the nearly two billion people across Africa & the Middle East,” says Sewraj.
So what does it mean to win a Loerie and why should one enter? “Apart from the recognition and validation of your work that gives you the leverage to achieve greater benefit either personally or as an organisation, it comes back to building an ecosystem that continues to support those consumers through work that shows creative excellence,” he says.
“And that is why winning a Loerie has been so coveted for the past 45 years,” concludes Sewraj.