Six months ago, 140 BBDO creative intern Mawande (Manez) Sobetwa didn’t really know what a copywriter was. Last weekend, he won gold at the Loerie Awards along with Lubalalo Mtati and JP Le Riche on the Snickers ‘Tongue Twister’ radio advertisement.
Executive creative director at the agency, Ivan Johnson, says that it’s fresh, unschooled and untainted talent like that of Manez that will drive adland in the coming years.
Johnson says that identifying fresh talent outside of traditional sources has been a key focus for the agency this year, and one that’s paid off. “Manez is a prime example of the talent we have in this country that might not emanate from the ad and design schools, and more agencies should be scouting and developing these people.”
Manez grew up in Delft township on the outskirts of Cape Town and joined youth publication Live Magazine in late 2011. Live Magazine is a quarterly publication created by South African youngsters and overseen by industry professionals. Based at the Cape Town offices of 140BBDO, the Live team have the benefit of idea sharing with the agency and on one such occasion, Johnson noticed Manez and admired his unusual approach and enthusiasm.
“It’s all totally surreal,” says Sobetwa. “The last six months have been a whirlwind of immense learning as well as daily challenges, all of which I’ve loved. If this is how my career has kicked off, I’m waiting in anticipation to see how the rest of it pans out.”
Manez’s award was one of three gold and five bronze Loeries won by 140 BBDO this weekend. Two were awarded in the television direction and cinematography categories for Distell’s Oude Meester ‘To the Masters’ commercial and another for the Mars Snickers ‘Tongue Twister’ radio advertisement. “These awards mark the end of a lucrative awards season for the agency. In addition to the seven Loeries, we’ve won two Ad of the Year Awards @ Creative Circle followed by a Gold and Grand-Prix for effectiveness at the Apex Awards,” says D’Oliveira.
140 BBDO won a campaign Bronze award in brand identity and collateral design for ‘The Art of Boxing’ – Johnny’s Athletics and Boxing, a Bronze award in branded mobile content and applications for ‘Window shopper’ – New Media Publishing’s Visi Magazine, a Bronze in TV & cinema commercials above 90s for ‘To the Masters’ – Oudemeester and a campaign Bronze in the integrated category, also for Oudemeester, arguably the toughest category and of which only 5 were awarded on the night.
JP Le Riche, Manez Sobetwa and Lubalalo Mtati with their Gold Loerie