This year will be the 5th time that See it Be It is a force at Cannes Lions. Since 2014, Cannes Lions has fully funded more than 70 women to participate at the Festival and in partnership with Spotify, the programme continues to support the next generation of female creative directors and takes an active role in shaping the industry to become more representative of the world in which we live.
Swati Bhattacharya, chief creative officer, FCBULKA has become the 2019 See It Be It Ambassador. She will guide the participants through the programme and lead the discussion around the theme for this year which asks participants to Invite yourself.
Swati leads a team of 113 people at FCBULKA in India, working on brands such as The Times of India, Nestlé, UNICEF, GSK and Pizza Hut. She began her career as a copy trainee at JWT and has won numerous creative awards throughout her 24 years in the industry she, including Cannes Lions and the prestigious Dada Saheb Phalke, India’s highest award in cinema. Her passion for equality and the development of talent is reflected in the work she creates and the culture she has fostered within FCB and across the Indian creative community.
As See It Be It Ambassador, Swati will champion the goal of gender parity in the industry and act as an advisor and role model for the women involved. “I’m so honoured to be named a See It Be It Ambassador,” she commented. “Sisterhood is the most powerful catalyst I have had in my life, and it has not only changed my career, but it has changed my life. In seeing these young, bright women from around the globe, I will unlock parts of myself and parts of them.”
Taking on the role from last year’s Ambassador, Chloe Gottlieb, director of product design at Google, Swati will work with See It Be It Chair. Madonna Badger, chief creative officer and founder of Badger & Winters, in steering the course of the programme.
Badger commented, “I can’t imagine someone better to represent all that See It Be It stands for. Throughout her career, Swati has shown us that creative excellence and fighting the stereotyping of women do not have to be mutually exclusive. She truly exemplifies the power of what happens when you ‘invite yourself’ – both in her work and as a leader in the industry. I am thrilled to be partnering with her and look forward to seeing her impact on the programme.”
In her role as Ambassador, Swati has also set this year’s theme saying, “As women, we don’t often feel deserving of the place we occupy. Our voices don’t always cooperate. I want us to leave Cannes believing that not only must we invite ourselves, but also leave the door open for our sisters.”
The programme that revolves around this theme will include executive training, intimate discussions with global industry luminaries, exclusive behind the scenes access to Cannes Lions juries and dedicated mentoring sessions with senior leaders from across the creative communications community. See It Be It also provides access to an international network of peers, mentors and sponsors, offers profile building opportunities and support to cultivate local communities and networks.
Louise Benson, vice president of Festivals, Cannes Lions, noted, “We know that investing in these women works. We’ve seen the power of See It Be It, in the access and the exposure it provides, the achievements of our alumna and the strength of the community that forms as a result. We’re absolutely delighted to have Swati as our See It Be It Ambassador. She’s a great example of the spirit of the programme, breaking barriers as one of the first female CCOs in India, creating phenomenal work and space for others to thrive.”
Applications for this year’s programme are now closed but opportunities to get involved as a speaker, mentor or supporter exist. Enquire here.