Cannes Lions has announced that its prices for 2010 will be frozen at 2009 levels. Like every trade fair, Cannes Lions saw a drop in attendance last year. But there are already questions as to whether a price freeze will be enough to win back participants. When the effects of music “sharing” hit the music industry, Midem froze prices and has continued nonetheless to improve the quantity and quality of conferences and services (MidemNet is included in this year’s event rather than being a separate off-shoot). But even so, numbers fell last year. It wasn’t so much that people didn’t want to come, it was simply that the industries have far less people to send.
The advertising industries is facing similar effects although with a time lag. I’d like to think that a price freeze could turn the situation around, but as a 3-day pass still costs €1,499 (not incl. VAT) I feel there will be many people making a very quick choice. Participants can invite one guest at €300, which is something. But these prices don’t include the costs of entering material for consideration, nor travel and food. I’m still surprised there doesn’t seem to be an early bird rate.
On the positive side, Cannes Lions has teamed up with the Berlin School of Creative Leadership to launch a brand-new venture called The Cannes Creative Leaders Programme, a two-week training initiative taking place in Berlin and Cannes in June for industry executives.