Cannes Lions teams up with The Black Network for third year running to amplify black talent at the festival! In a bold move to continue championing diversity and inclusion, Cannes Lions has joined forces with The Black Network for the third consecutive year. This marks the launch of Black Out 2024 following the resounding success of the 2023 Black Out initiative.

Black Out Initiative.

Black Out 2024 stands as a clarion call to organizations entrenched in the marketing and creative sectors to actively foster Black representation and inclusion at the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity. Spearheaded by Cephas Williams and The Black Network, this campaign aims to ensure the robust presence of Black talent in the creative, marketing, and communications industries at the prestigious event held in Cannes, France. Bolstered by the enduring collaboration between The Black Network and Cannes Lions, the latter will again provide 50 Festival passes in solidarity with the Black Out mission.

Simon Cook, CEO of LIONS, expressed

“Cannes Lions is committed to actively combatting underrepresentation and we’re delighted to build on our relationship with Cephas and The Black Network for a third year, to make Cannes Lions a more inclusive space. The Black Network’s ongoing commitment to showcasing and fostering Black talent within the global creative community has successfully opened doors and provided unparalleled opportunities for the cohort it brings together. We’re grateful to be able to work alongside them and to provide more opportunities and access to the Festival.”

Adding to the discourse, Cephas Williams, Founder of The Black Network, reiterated 

We are looking forward to embarking on the third year of this important proposition, a journey that began with a noticeable absence of Black individuals at the Cannes Lions Festival. Since then we’ve seen an increase in visibility across the beach, however, it’s clear that visibility is just the starting point. It’s vital for our presence to embody purpose and direction, ensuring effective alignment within the industry and our peers. This concept is derived from a term I coined at the inception of Black Out, ‘Purposeful Proximity.’ Each year, we witness the tangible impact of providing a platform for Black talent at Cannes Lions. Our community gains invaluable exposure and connections but also brings fresh perspectives that are vital to the evolution of the creative industry.”

Black Out Initiative
Black Out

With the extension of the Black Out initiative into 2024, The Black Network celebrates its accomplishment in facilitating access for 114 Black professionals at Cannes Lions, with support from over 20 industry companies and numerous leaders thus far.

The doors of The Black Network remain wide open to applications from individuals within the Black community eager to make their mark in the creative realm. Prospective candidates for this year’s cohort will be chosen based on their potential to derive value from the Festival experience, aligning with their talents, and their capacity to contribute meaningfully to the ongoing dialogue surrounding the imperatives of inclusion, creativity, and innovation.

To become a part of the Black Out 2024 experience, interested individuals are invited to apply HERE  

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