As COVID-19 continues to spread throughout the world and global cases spill over the 200,000 mark, Cannes Lions organisers have officially postponed the annual International Festival of Creativity. It will take place in October this year, not June.
The organisers had put a contingency plan in place last week in preparation, but did not put it in action while they monitored the situation. Now, they have decided, is the time to act. The death toll from the outbreak of coronavirus in Italy had surged in the last 24 hours by 475. Donald Trump had extended his response, announcing that America’s border with Canada would close. French Prime Minister, Edouard Philippe, had begun implementing restrictions to prevent the spread of the virus, including a ban on public gatherings and a temporary closure of France’s borders. And The UK had shut down its schools.
Chairman, Philip Thomas, and managing director, Simon Cook, have issued a statement confirming the change in schedule.
Cook stated, “Our community is facing unprecedented challenges and collaboration has never been more important.
“We are focussed now on planning the festival – and our beating heart, the Lions – to ensure our community is able to recognise the extraordinary work it contributes to business, organisations and society.”