Jury President

Swati Bhattacharya 
Chief Creative Officer
FCB, Ulka

 Swati Bhattacharya is a humanist.

Swati’s work finds wonder and awe in the joys and beauty of human existence, its challenges and its tragedies. It draws from human culture and the life stance that brands can only find relevance if they inspire hope and enrich the lives of people.

Her ideas reflect the deep conviction that it’s the responsibility of brands to inspire people to create the kind of world they deserve. Her campaigns have gone on to become platforms that have joined individuality with interdependence enriching the lives of people and encouraging them to enrich the lives of others.

Swati started her career in advertising twenty-four years ago. A young woman driven by hunger and excitement, she made her mark very quickly. In 2016 she became India’s first woman CCO in India, when she joined FCB Ulka.  

Only 8 of the 100 most award-winning chief creative officers are women and Swati Bhattacharya is one of them. She was awarded the Creative professional of the Year by ET Now ‘Stars of the Industry’ Awards. She was the Jury chair at CLIO 2017 and Athena Awards. Under her leadership, FCB Ulka won 50 awards including 4 Cannes Lions, Clio gold, D& AD yellow pencil and a Spikes Grand Prix for #NoConditionsApply - Sindoor Khela this year. Her work has transformed FCB Ulka’s creative reputation making it the most awarded Indian Agency.

While she stays married to advertising, she periodically makes short films. Her films have travelled the festival circuits from Vancouver film festival to Miami shorts. She has won the Best Short Film title at the Kolkata International Short Film Festival and the prestigious Dada Saheb Phalke for the Best Screenplay for her film ‘double shift’. Her writings have been published in diverse media ranging from national newspapers to on-line content sites.

Outside of work, Swati is a single mom, raising 2 teenage girls in the whirlwind of advertising!

Neo Mashigo
Chief Creative Officer
M&C Saatchi
 

Neo Mashigo is the Chief Creative Officer of M&C Saatchi Group South Africa and Co-founder of I See A Different You a Soweto-born Creative Collective who set out to change the world’s view of Africa. Throughout his career, Neo has been passionate about the creativity in Africa and producing work that better represents the continent. 

He is the Chairman of the Creative Circle who’s purpose is to inspire the transformation of product, people and perception through the power of creativity. Neo is also the former Chairman of the Loeries and current Board Member – Africa and the Middle East’s premier advertising award show.

Before joining M&C Saatchi Group, Neo was Executive Creative Director at two of South Africa’s largest advertising agencies, Ogilvy & Mather JHB and FCB JHB. While there, he led  both these agencies to the top spot in creative ranking tables. 

Neo has won several local and international awards including a Grand Prix at the Cannes Lions Festival of Creativity and The Loerie Awards. In 2019 Financial Mail Ad Focus Awards named him Industry Leader of the Year and M&C Saatchi walked away with Partnership of the Year with Nandos and Large Agency of the Year.

Xolisa Dyeshana
Chief Creative Officer
Joe Public

 

Xolisa is Chief Creative Officer and partner at Joe Public United and has been an invaluable part of the agency group’s growth story, having begun his journey with the agency as far back as 2006 and becoming a shareholder in 2013.

He contributes a wealth of experience gained over 17 years, working on iconic brands like Mercedes-Benz, Ford Motor Company, Nedbank, Dialdirect, P&G, Renault, 3M, Chicken Licken, UberEats, Converse, Distell, Momentum, Santam, Elizabeth Arden and Toyota.

Xolisa’s passion lies in the world of creativity. To this end, he has actively contributed to the industry as Chairperson of Creative Circle, the highest decision-making body for advertising creativity in South Africa and served as Chairman of the Loeries (2012–2014), South Africa’s premier advertising awards show. He also strives to give a voice to African creativity on the global stage, having served on the juries of almost every renowned advertising award show across the world. Most recently, he was elected to the international board of the One Show – the premier advertising show in the United States.

His passion for creative excellence is evident in the numerous awards won throughout his career at both local and international awards festivals, including Cannes, D&AD, One Show, Loeries and more – earning him recognition as South Africa’s No. 1 creative leader in 2018 and as one of Finweek’s ‘Top 6 People to Watch in Advertising’.

Xolisa lists opening the 20th Annual Design Indaba Conference alongside Pepe Marais among his personal career highlights. He is also proud to have been one of the creative minds behind Brothers for Life, one of South Africa’s biggest and most successful behavioural change campaigns – demonstrating another of Xolisa’s passion points, which is driving social change through creativity.

Xolisa is a founding member of Ikamva Lakusasa and has also been part of many industry committees aimed at helping young people from underprivileged backgrounds to gain access to the industry – actively engaging a new generation of creative minds in finding new solutions for a better South Africa.

Carl Willoughby
Executive Creative Director
TBWA Hunt Lascaris.

Executive Creative Director/unprofessional squash player/coffee addict. My career spans over 20 years at various agencies throughout South Africa. I’ve worked on many brands in different categories from VW, Nissan, BMW, to Liberty, Standard Bank, Vodacom, bp, Jameson, SAB, DStv and more; I even launched a telecommunications company while briefly living in the middle-east. In the ever evolving world of communication I still believe in the transformative power of the idea, no matter the medium and that advertising can play a more pivotal role in society than just ticking boxes or satisfying focus groups. I’ve collected a number awards locally and internationally and am currently ranked 3rd  top ECD in South Africa according to the Loerie awards. I’m a proud Pirate at TBWA Hunt Lascaris Jhb

Tshepo Mogorosi
Senior Art Director
Joe Public United

Tshepo is an award-winning Art Director who has been with Joe Public United for 8 years. During this time, he has worked on brands such as Nedbank, Chicken Licken, Jet and Clover and has managed to win several gold loeries. Tshepo is also a denim head and believes that the craft required for both Art Direction and making a piece of denim is what inspires his work daily.

 

Jonathan Wolberg
Creative Director
FCB Africa, Johannesburg

Jonathan Wolberg knew he wasn’t going to make it big as a Mathematician or Science extraordinaire, so he studied Graphic Design before landing his first job as an Art Director.

His passion for great ideas and craft have seen him win at multiple award shows at some of the most renowned agencies in South Africa.

Jonathan is also an above-average artist, average drummer and below-average cook.

 

Matthew Barnes
Chief Creative Officer
Ogilvy

Matthew started his career at Ogilvy as a copywriter and just over a year later moved over to another agency. Over the past 18 years he has worked at South Africa’s most prestigious creative agencies, including Rednail Leo Burnett, TBWA Hunt Lascaris, Network BBDO, Jupiter Drawing room, Publicis, and FCB. He then joined Ogilvy again in 2015 as the Executive Creative Director for Digital  

What attracted Matthew to the industry were the ad reels his father brought home, like, Jasper Carrot’s Show and the Benetton work of the 80s. “Especially the Benetton Work” he reiterates. Over and above this was the opportunity to work with a whole bunch of people who are ridiculously talented and change the world one advert at a time.

 

Steve Babaeko
CEO
X3M Ideas

Steve is an unusual type of businessman. In an industry that seemed to have run out of inspirational stories, he stepped in and wrote a new chapter. Now, his X3M Ideas Group, which he founded in 2012, has become the yardstick for a new generation of Nigerian creative entrepreneurs. 

Steve’s unyielding belief in looking challenges in the eye and staring them down has attracted the best talents to his firm and pulled in clients from around the world. His next stop? South-Central Africa, via Lusaka and Johannesburg, where he recently opened independent offices for X3M Ideas.

Before starting X3M, which has now grown to include X3M Music, and Zero Degrees Productions, Mr. Babaeko was the creative director at 141 Worldwide. Over there, he sparked the fire of creativity that made that agency the trendiest for many years.

Steve began his advertising career at Mc&A Saatchi & Saatchi and later moved to Prima Garnet Ogilvy. For more than 23 years, he has been helping to create some of the most iconic marketing works on the continent. You might remember the “Proudly Nigerian” campaign for British American Tobacco, the “Now You’re Talking” campaign for Etisalat, “You Need A New Bank” campaign for Diamond Bank and so many others. 

He continues to represent Africa on the global stage, having been a member of the jury at the New York Advertising Festival, the Loeries, and African Cristal Awards. He has also been a speaker at the Cannes Lions Festival and also one of Adweek’s Top 100 Creatives in the world 2019.

Steve holds a bachelor’s degree in Theatre Arts from the esteemed Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, Nigeria. He is currently the President of the Association of Advertising Agencies of Nigeria (AAAN) and member of the board of International Advertising Association (I.A.A), Nigeria. Outside advertising, he was the former Chairman, Public Relations Committee of the Nigerian-American Chamber of Commerce.

Steve has attended several international Leadership training, including some in Harvard Business School, Columbia University, New York and Stanford Graduate School of Business.

 

 

Sbu Sithole
Co-Founder / Chief Creative Director
The Odd Number

Sbu Sitole is the Co-Founder and Chief Creative Director of The Odd Number, South Africa’s Agency of the year 2017 and 2019 respectively. Since it’s founding in 2015, The Odd Number has consistently won awards in all South Africa’s major award shows including The Creative Circle, the Loeries Awards, as well as the Pendorings Awards - most recently ranked 2nd most awarded agency to feature in the show. In 2018, Sbu was voted most admired Executive Creative Director in Johannesburg, and second most admired Executive Creative Director in South Africa 2019, in a local poll amongst South African Creative leaders. Most recently The Odd Number won it’s first 4 One Show Merits, becoming the first 100% Black Owned Agency to ever garner this accolade. The Odd Number, is currently at second place in the Creative Circle Rankings.