India on Saturday won a Gold Lion at the recently concluded annual global advertising festival Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity, taking the overall medal count to 40.  Wieden & Kennedy’s ‘Da Da Ding’ campaign for Nike India won a gold in film category. Last year, India had won 27 metals.

There were a total of 1,227 entries from India, out of which 106 were shortlisted this year.

McCann Worldgroup India is the highest awarded agency from the country winning a total of 15 metals along with Grand Prix, the highest award at the festival. The agency won four gold, seven silver four bronze metals. Its Immunity Charm campaign done for ministry of public health, Afghanistan was the most awarded entry from the agency, winning a Grand Prix for Good along with four gold, six silver and two bronze.

“We at McCann India believe in creative excellence and our performance at Cannes 2017 exemplifies this. This wouldn’t have been possible without the ‘Creative First Culture’ at McCann Worldgroup under the leadership of our chief executive Harris Diamond. Rob Riley, the global creative chairman has driven this creative vision intricately which has reflected in the overall performance of McCann Worldgroup. Most importantly, I thank all our client partners because great work happens only when our clients join hands with us on this quest for excellence," said Prasoon Joshi, chairman, McCann Asia Pacific and chief executive and chief creative officer McCann India.

Ogilvy & Mather won nine metals across categories including two gold, two silver and five bronze metals. Its Healthy Hands Chalk Sticks campaign created for ITC Ltd owned soap brand Savlon was the most awarded Indian campaign, winning a total of seven metals across categories.

Ad guru and executive chairman and creative director, Ogilvy South Asia Piyush Pandey, said “I’m very happy for the young people who work at Ogilvy India and have done us proud. My congratulations to all other agencies in India."

Commenting on the agency’s performance, Kunal Jeswani, chief executive, Ogilvy India said, “The nine Lions we picked up at the 2017 Cannes Festival is recognition from one of the toughest competitions in our industry, that we do this incredible well. Great clients and teams partner to create great work at Ogilvy every day. We don’t create work to win awards. We just bring our best game to every client and every brief and that is how we win."

Leo Burnett, BBDO India and Taproot Dentsu won three metals occupying third spot in the India metal tally.

Leo Burnett won a Silver Lion in the Innovation category along with a Bronze Lion in the design category for its ‘Roads that honk’ campaign for HP Lubricants. The agency also bagged gold in the creative effectiveness category for ‘Bajaj V- The Nation’s Bike campaign for Bajaj Auto.

“Winning Gold at Cannes Lions’ Effectiveness awards is absolutely amazing for us. Especially since it comes at the back of the win in the Innovation category, earlier in the week. In fact, being the most innovative and the most effective agency is exactly how we would have liked it to be," said Dheeraj Sinha, chief strategy officer, Leo Burnett, South Asia.

Sinha noted that India’s overall performance has been spectacular this year across agencies and categories.

“We have made a mark in categories where awards have traditionally eluded us. This might just be a reflection of the ongoing transformation in the Indian industry where agencies are beginning to focus on being globally competitive rather than staying inward-focused. There is also the fact that we are experimenting with various mediums and not just television, anymore," he added.

BBDO India has also received three metals for campaigns such as Ariel’s Share the load and Mirinda Release the pressure.

“Mirinda’s Silver Lion win is significant because it’s the first Cannes Lion for PepsiCo in India. Ariel and Mirinda are both big mainstream brands and the work done is real and transformative. It feels great when real work that transforms brands in mainstream media gets recognised at the highest level worldwide," said Josy Paul, chairman and chief creative officer, BBDO India.

Paul also noted that the one major trend at Cannes this year was about creating tangible things campaigns like ‘Fearless Girl’ (a bronze girl statue placed strategically opposite the famous charging bull at the Wall Street) , ‘Immunity Charm’ (a bracelet created to keep a track of various vaccinations an infant has taken) and ‘Meet Graham’ (a fictional man created to show how humans would look like if our bodies evolved to withstand car-crash forces) are great examples of such work.

“We saw a rise in technology-based ideas especially where technology meets social purpose. Data driven innovations for greater good dominated the theme at Cannes this year. India’s work was being discussed in so many forums at the festival and our shortlists and metals are a proof of our increasing creative influence at the global level," he added.

Wieden & Kennedy won a total of two metals for its popular ‘Da Da Ding’ campaign for Nike India. While the Healthcare Agency of 2016 Medulla Communications also won two metals for its campaign Last Laugh created for Indian Association of Palliative Care. Both these agencies are on the fourth spot in the India metal tally.

The fifth position is occupied by Law & Kenneth Saatchi & Saatchi which has won a single gold metal in the Glass Lion category for its campaign ‘Give Her Five’ created for The Ammada Trust. Famous Innovations also shares the same spot bagging a bronze in the design category for a campaign created for Titan Co Ltd’s online jewellery brand Caratlane.