Annual list compiled by the communications industry’s leading magazine released today

Dubai, UAE – December 10, 2012: Communicate, the communications industry’s leading publication in the region, has announced the best creative and media agencies of the year this month. The annual list is compiled using a simple formula that assesses the industry’s top campaigns and the organizations behind them from their number of award wins over the year.

For many in advertising, Communicate’s Agency of the Year list is the gold seal of approval added to an already prestigious roster of industry accolades. New for this year, the Mediaquest-owned magazine has released three lists: Most Awarded Campaign of the Year, Top 10 Creative Agencies of 2012 and Top Five Media Agencies of 2012.

160 campaigns were surveyed this year, all of whom have won awards at the region’s most prestigious events including the Dubai Lynx Awards, MENA Cristal Awards, Gemas Effie MENA Awards and the Cannes Advertising Festival. According to the formula, each award win corresponds to a number of points, which are then tallied up to reveal the best. Each campaign is given a total score, the highest of which is the Most Awarded Campaign of the Year by Communicate.

“The formula we use to name these agencies is very simple, and it’s all very transparent,” reveals Nathalie Bontems, Group Managing Editor of Mediaquest. “Each category of win is given a ratio according to the formula that we share with our readers in December’s Communicate. For example, a Grand Cristal is worth four points, a Cannes Lion Grand Prix eight points and so on.”

“There are no judges – it’s purely mathematical,” she added.

An increasingly visible trend amongst the agencies that made the list this year is the increased numbers of agencies based outside of Dubai and Beirut, the traditional creative hubs in the Middle East.

“New creative hotspots such as Cairo and Tunis have been appearing on the regional map. Whether this trend will continue in the coming years, or subside as the socio-political environment does in these countries is something that remains to be seen,” Nathalie said.

“We need to see if success in these markets is proof of in-depth growth, or a reflection of the Arab Spring.”

Communicate’s list reveals that increasing numbers of Middle Eastern agencies are faring far better internationally at the prestigious Cannes Advertising Festival, indicative of regional growth and development as the quality of campaigns coming out of the region continues to advance.

As the advertising industry’s most respected publication in the region, Communicate releases regular information about the landscape of the Middle Eastern advertising world. As well as the highly anticipated Agencies of the Year lists, Communicate publishes posters mapping out the industry, a regional salary survey and the Hottest Brands list among other special projects.

“Communicate aims to give the industry benchmarks by which is can assess itself regularly,” says Nathalie. “That way we can get a better understanding of how the industry is evolving, where it’s heading and what still needs to be done. We give benchmarks that can help the industry strive for improvement.”

The three most awarded campaigns of 2012 are:
1. “Return of Dictator Ben Ali” by Memac Ogilvy Label Tunisia for Tunisian NGO Engagement Citoyen with 58 points
2. “No Rights No Women” by Leo Burnett Beirut for Lebanese women rights defense NGO No Rights No Women with 47 points
3. “Cheyef Halak” by Impact BBDO Beirut for Lebanese TV station LBCi with 32 points

The three creative agencies of 2012 are:
1. Leo Burnett Beirut with a total of 112 points
2. Y&R Dubai with a total of 70 points
3. Memac Ogilvy Label Tunisia with a total of 63 points

The three media agencies of 2012 are:
1. Starcom Mediavest Group Dubai
2. Mindshare Dubai
3. Media Direction OMD Cairo

About Mediaquest: partner in media, partner in digital, partner in events, partner in success

For more than 20 years, Mediaquest has provided unique insights into the Arab world through its diverse range of media. It operates in Algiers, Beirut, Dubai, Jeddah, Riyadh and Paris and publishes in three languages.

With more than 20 consumer and trade titles covering business, marketing, communications, women’s interests, lifestyle, entertainment and automotive, Mediaquest is one of the leading media companies in the Middle East and North Africa.

Mediaquest’s mission is to inform, educate and entertain audiences in the Mena region, providing a bridge between the Arab world and the West. It prides itself in providing unbiased analysis of the issues that matter most to the region.

Partner in publishing
Mediaquest Publishing – Business, corporate and consumer magazines. Celebrated titles include Arabies, Saneou Al Hadath, Trends, Gulf Marketing Review, Communicate, Haya, Raceweek,, Autocar Middle East with F1 Racing Middle East and Policy.

Partner in digital
dotmena – dotmena is fast becoming the premium network of choice for advertisers and publishers to expand their reach in the region. dotmena represents more than 2,000 websites in the fields of business, marketing, communications, sports, women’s interest, lifestyle and entertainment, allowing us to match the right ad to the right audience at the right time.

Partner in events
Mediaquest events creates, project manages and delivers successful events, including:
GMR Marketing to Women Conference: deconstructs conventional marketing wisdom to help unearth fresh insights, new attitudes and research to help marketers connect more deeply with one of the region’s most influential consumer bases.
GEMAS Effie Mena Awards: the regional version of the world’s premier awards for marketing excellence, the Effie. It is one of the most eagerly anticipated events on the Middle East’s business calendar.

Insurex: A Meeting of Minds from the Middle East Insurance Industry, bringing together insurers, reinsurers, brokers, regulators, risk managers, lawyers and consultants from across the region and international markets to discuss key trends and share best practice, creating an open platform for discussion, sharing information and networking.

SPIA: The Sports Industry Awards is a joint venture between 360 Sport and Mediaquest, designed to showcase the relationship of sporting excellence and business. The inaugural event will take place in March 2013.

Communicate Names Agencies of the Year

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