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Cannes Lions 2023: Here’s how the agencies in India are gearing up for maximal recognition

After winning big at the Cannes Lions last year, India has indeed set the bar high for creativity. In this piece, enlists the various ad campaigns that are being sent from some of the many agencies from the country

With less than a month left for the International Festival of Creativity to begin, multiple agencies have finalised the creative campaigns they will be sending to Cannes Lions 2023.

Cannes Lions is the most prestigious awards gala of the advertising industry globally and is scheduled to take place at its usual location- Palais des Festivals et des Congrès in Cannes, France, from June 19-23. 

Last year, India’s performance at the coveted awards was unprecedented, as for the first time in history, the country secured 121 shortlists and brought home a total of 47 metal hauls across 20 categories on the D-days, up from 2017’s 40 wins.

As reported on, earlier in April, several creative agencies had already entered the coveted awards gala and put their best foot forward. However, there have been various additions to the same, not just in terms of ad agencies but also in the number of campaigns being sent to Cannes, this year, from India.

Here’s an updated list of campaigns that are being sent to Cannes from various agencies:

  1. Talented.Agency- Swiggy’s Why Is This A Swiggy Ad and Cleartrip’s ortraveloncleartrip QR code Print ad 
  2. Dentsu Creative-  TVS’ The Responsible Manhole, Mortein’s Suraksha Ka Teeka activation, Vedantu’s The Everything Book, Vice Media’s The Unfiltered History Tour
  3. The Womb- Truecaller’s Buri Neeyat Waale Tera Call Laal
  4. DDB Mudra Group- Indeed’s Hire Better, MTV Hustle 2.0’s Bothard, McDonalds’ Eatqual, Battleground India’s Machine-gun Mouth, Stayfree’s Daughter’s Day ads
  5. Enormous Advertising- Asahi India Glass’ Silence is a Luxury that you Deserve and Samsonite’s Tested Like Samsonite Influencer campaign
  6. L&K Saatchi and Saatchi- Zepto's Stretchable Time
  7. ^atom Network- Reliance General Insurance’s The EmerJersey and The D Series Project
  8. MullenLowe Lintas Group- Infosys’ A boy with a rainbow heart, Future Generali’s Redefine Family, Absolut’s #AbsolutAlly, Vim’s Vim Black for Men
  9. FCB Group India- HDFC Bank’s V for Vigil Aunty (FCB Kinnect), Smart Bazaar’s Second Question (FCB Kinnect), Google Cloud’s Hum Banayenge (FCB Kinnect), The Politics of Hair (FCB India) and Navneet’s Tr. for Teacher (FCB Interface)
  10. Havas Group India- American Oncology Institute’s #ThePinkRibbonCollection (Havas Life Sorento)
  11. BBDO-  Under Ariel’s #ShareTheLoad umbrella, the agency has entered with three ad campaigns- Silent Separation, See Equal and See Equal #ShareTheLoad Long-term along with WhatsApp’s Scam Se Bacho and Ralco Tyres #NoPressureDelivery
  12. VMLY&R- Tea Cycle 360 Calendar
  13. Wondrlab- Spotify’s The Unheard Playlist and Bharat Matrimony’s Artificial love

While the campaigns being sent from Talented.Agency, The Womb, DDB Mudra Group, Enormous Advertising, L&K Saatchi and Saatchi and ^atom Network have already been covered on, here are the campaigns that some of the other agencies are sending to Cannes this year.


Dentsu had earlier told that the agency would be sending ‘The Responsible Manhole’ to Cannes this year. It is a campaign that was conceptualised for TVS Motor Company, and for which the agency had partnered with BMC, to address the critical issue of open manholes in Mumbai with the intent to up the ante for road safety during monsoons.

But after various deliberations, the agency is sending some more campaigns to Cannes.

Conceptualised for Mortein, the agency is also sending “Suraksha Ka Teeka”, an ad campaign that banks on Indian mothers’ strong belief in applying ‘Kaala Teeka’ on their little ones as they believe that it protects children from evils. 

To help mothers keep their children safe, Mortein introduced a reformulation of the traditional ‘Teeka’ with Lemon Eucalyptus oil to create a disguised mosquito repellent which ensures that the product looked and felt the same as the traditional ‘Teeka’ and is safe for children. Its packaging was designed using Aipan Folk Art, as it itself is considered to ward off the evil-eye.

Additionally, Dentsu has also sent e-learning portal Vedantu’s ‘The Everything Book’ campaign, which highlights that 80% of the kids in rural India don’t have access to quality education and how high-speed internet could fix this. Vedantu had partnered with Benlycos- a provider of digital aggregator technology, for the mission.

The Everything Book-

The agency has also reentered with their 2022’s Lion-winning work for Vice Media- The Unfiltered History Tour which showcases a secret tour of the British Museum’s stolen artifacts via AR and immersive podcasts. 

When visitors scanned the museum’s stolen artifacts, geo-located filters are activated enabling native experts to narrate the true histories of how they were stolen, as scenes of crime form a subversive, contextual overlay over the artifact using Augmented Reality. 

Vice Media’s ‘The Unfiltered History Tour’-

MullenLowe Lintas Group

Conceptualised by MullenLowe Lintas, Infosys’ ‘A boy with a Rainbow heart’ campaign demonstrates the company’s commitment to gender equality and inclusivity by fostering a workplace that is welcoming and supportive of the LGBTQIA+ community. It was launched as a Pride campaign in 2022 - aimed at inspiring individuals to embrace their sexual identity with pride, despite societal pressures and negative stereotypes. 

The agency had also conceptualised Future Generali’s ‘Redefine Family’ campaign which showcased Generali Indian Insurance standing in solidarity with the queer community and openly support their partners in sickness and in health, reflecting the brand’s commitment to inclusivity and support for the LGBTQIA+ community.

The agency is also sending Absolut’s #AbsolutAlly ad campaign - which narrates the stories of 10 members of the LGBTQIA+ community recounting the hurtful conversations from their past, culminating with a piece of advice that’s necessary for everyone to understand- the appropriate way to have conversations, whenever talking to an individual from the LGBTQIA+ community. 

Conceptualised by Mullen Lowe Lintas, Vim Liquid’s special edition for men which was branded- “VIM BLACK. Made for men”, as a means to find an innovative way to make men aware of dishwashing being their duty too, has also been sent to Cannes this year.

Vim Black Ad featuring Milind Soman-

FCB Group India

Conceptualised by FCB Kinnect for HDFC Bank, Vigil Aunty is a character who entertains people as she speaks on how to avert fraud and is an anti-fraud influencer who uses all social platforms, the latest trends, and collaborates with various influencers and celebrities to accomplish her sole mission- freedom from frauds.

Vigil Aunty’s influencer collaborations-


A post shared by Khushaal (@khushaal_pawaar)

FCB Kinnect has sent its Smart Bazaar ad - titled ‘Second Question’ - which tries to highlight the alleged injustice in Durga Pujo, an Indian festival, wherein the idol that is venerated in the celebration in order to be sacred, needs to be made from the soil freely given by sex workers, but the same sex workers are considered to be impure to attend the same celebrations. 

Smart Bazaar’s ad-

In commemorating the 75th year of Indian Independence, FCB Kinnect had come up with a series of ad films for Google Cloud, which showcased the stories of the struggle and ingenuity of Indian entrepreneurs and how the B2B brand is a partner in creating innovative and effective solutions. 

Google Cloud’s Case film- 

FCB India is sending ‘The Politics of Hair’ campaign which touches upon the concept of how a woman’s hair is always intertwined with religion, culture, sexuality, and patriarchy, binding her to society’s rules, but despite several protests highlighting the injustice, globally, India chose to remain silent.  

With this campaign, the agency aimed to raise a voice of support to the women of Iran by bringing their plight close to home and heart and awaken Indian women to the truth that Iran's issue is not Iran's alone, but every woman’s issue. 


On the occasion of Teacher’s Day, Navneet created an official title for teachers- Tr. for Teacher, for it is the one profession that makes possible various professions be it Doctors, lawyers, engineers etc. but sadly they don’t have a title for themselves.

Conceptualised by FCB Interface, the campaign was launched as a social experiment film which aired on several platforms including YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn.

Havas Group India

The Group has sent the campaign conceptualised by its healthcare vertical - Havas Life Sorento - for the American Oncology Institute. ‘The Pink Ribbon Collection’ is an attempt at putting awareness around the ‘six steps’ into action by changing the medium and engaging women in the moment when they are most open to the idea of breast self-examination. 



Under the umbrella of Ariel’s #ShareTheLoad, an eight-year-old campaign which aims to get men to share the load at home, BBDO has entered Cannes with three campaigns. The ad campaign titled “See the signs of silent separation” deals with the introduction of a new term called ‘Silent Separation’ - which denotes the emotional distance that creeps into marriage because of inequality at home.

The agency’s other campaign under Ariel’s #ShareTheLoad highlights the prevalent societal culture, wherein women are conditioned to never challenge or confront their husbands, and asks why men can share the load with other men but not with their wives bringing to spotlight the question of whether men never saw women as their equals.

 Ariel #ShareTheLoad See Equal Campaign-

BBDO is also sending Ariel’s #ShareTheLoad, one of the longest-running movement against gender inequality at home by a brand, to the Cannes this time. Started in 2015 by raising awareness with a pertinent question- ‘Is laundry only a woman’s job?’, to an apology letter in 2016, to raising yet another question- ‘Are we teaching our sons, what we’ve been teaching our daughters?’ in 2018, and unequal sleep between men and women owing to  distribution of household chores in 2020, the brand finally took a defiant stand in 2022 and turned its packs into a silent protest by changing the names on its packs with names of hundreds of Indian men. 

Conceptualised by the agency for WhatsApp, “Scam Se Bacho” is another ad campaign which aimed to help the older generation by recreating iconic Bollywood song from the '70s - Aye Bhai Zara Dekh Ke Chalo’, and turning it into a melodic lesson about digital payment safety and a reminder to be mindful of digital payment scams.

Ralco Tyres’ #NoPressureDelivery highlights the immense pressure on the tyres of delivery riders’ vehicle that is fuelled by food and delivery apps, reducing the delivery time to as low as 10-minutes to beat the competition, in addition to the various pressure tests that a tyre goes through in its lifecycle.

The quick delivery timings force delivery riders to overspeed and break traffic rules, just to deliver on time, which led the agency to the core thought of the brand’s next socially relevant message- ‘Pressure is meant for tyres, not people,’ and it chose actor Sonu Sood to be the face to take the idea forward. 

The campaign:


To question the cultural taboo around menstruation which fuels from lack of information and perpetuates a preventable cycle of silence and shame, and even leads to 23% of girls in India to drop out of school when they begin to menstruate, VMLY&R conceptualised Tea Cycle- a 360 calendar with 28 unique tea blends- for a comforting beverage that's part of India's DNA to open the conversation and guide them through each day of their menstruation.


Conceptualised by Wondrlab for Spotify, ‘The Unheard Playlist’ aims to leverage and put forth the strength of Spotify Playlists to create an enhanced playlist on Spotify wherein the female artist’s voice was muted in various duet songs from across Hindi and other regional languages to signify that sometimes one needs to un-hear to actually hear someone.

Spotify’s The Unheard Playlist-

Another ad campaign that has been sent to Cannes from Wondrlab is that of Bharat Matrimony. Titled ‘Artificial Love’, the Valentine’s Day social media campaign created with the help of AI tools such as ChatGPT and Midjourney, features an AI-generated entity - Aaditya Iyer (AI) - as the perfect Valentine.

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