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The importance of international talent was the key theme of a joint lunch between Bing, Microsoft’s search engine, and the Advertising Association on Wednesday as part of Advertising Week Europe, which is taking place in London this Monday to Thursday. Hosted in the beautiful and renowned surroundings of Fortnum & Mason on London’s Piccadilly, the event attracted the leading names from across Ad Land to discuss how London thrives from the global talent based in the city and how important it is that this pipeline of creativity continues to flow as the UK leaves the EU.
Advertising Week Global CEO Matthew Scheckner delivered an upbeat opening message to guests where he highlighted the “leading role” of the Advertising Association in bringing industry together as the country approaches Brexit and thanked Bing and the Association for hosting a keynote discussion on this hugely important issue.
Bing VP for EMEA Ad Sales Axel Steinman then spoke to guests about the “very strong partnership” the business has with the Advertising Association, as well as the challenging times advertising faces as a sector today. He was firm in his support for the talent working in advertising, calling them the “critical success factor” for the industry, adding that as a business, we “need to have the talent that can connect with both consumers in the country and with the wider world”.
Advertising Association CEO Stephen Woodford said that the issue of talent is the most important issue we face as an industry and highlighted the ways the Association has been pressing the case for continued free movement of people from the EU with Government, as well as encouraging the best talent from elsewhere in the world to come and work in the UK after Brexit.
Following lunch, Alex Wood, Europe Editor of Forbes Media facilitated a panel discussion along with creative talent from across the EU who have chosen to base themselves in London. From Bing, there was Milka Kramer (Sales Director UK), while Benjamin Lickfett (Head of Technology and Innovation, Diageo) spoke along with Fredrink Borestrom (President, IAA UK Chapter & Agency Partner, LinkedIn), who also gave his perspective. All contributors discussed their career journeys and what had brought them to London to work in the world’s advertising hub – and all agreed it wasn’t the weather!
The consensus was that it is London’s concentration of talented individuals bringing the best of their diverse backgrounds that makes the city the acknowledged success that it is. Quoting Advertising Association Chairman, James Murphy, Fredrik said that “talent breeds talent, and talent attracts talent” and that with other EU cities and markets eager to share in London’s success, the importance of the advertising industry working together to safeguard the supply and place of global talent in the UK has never been greater.
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