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Fast Forward winners announced

NABS’ annual Fast Forward training programme came to a nail-biting finale on Wednesday evening as the winning team was announced. Team Eastwood scooped the award in a fiercely-fought contest responding to a fictitious government brief based on tackling the issues around the UK’s ageing population.

Teams were asked to specifically think about how to unify, synthesise and accurately target the many and diverse   government messages currently given to the over 65s.

A week earlier, the eight teams had delivered ten minute pitches to client Wendy Proctor, deputy director, Cabinet Office Shared Communications Service and a team of high profile judges.

The NABS’ ten-week Fast Forward training programme gives the industry’s hottest young talent the chance to learn directly from advertising’s most respected figures, who give their time to deliver bespoke sessions on a range of key industry skills. Working in multi-disciplinary teams comprising of delegates and mentors, the groups then apply the skills learned over the weeks in a night of high tension, quick-fire pitches.

Winning team Eastwood wowed the judges with their meticulous and comprehensive approach to the complex brief. Team Eastwood’s campaign particularly stood out due to its thorough media strategy and excellent partnership ideas, as well as a proposal for an innovative overarching brand with real breadth and stretch. . Judges were also impressed with the way the team planned to tackle the short-term issues around ageing as well as providing a long-term vision.

As a further prize, team Eastwood has been given the opportunity by Sheila Mitchell, director of marketing at Public Health England, to present their ideas to a team at Whitehall.

Zoë Osmond, CEO of NABS, said: “Fast Forward offers a fantastic opportunity for hungry, young advertising and media professionals to boost their skills and learn from some of the best in the industry. Each year we see a wonderfully good natured, hard working but competitive group of rising stars who give their all to deliver some fantastic responses to what is always a truly challenging brief.”

“The beauty of Fast Forward is that delegates get to meet, work and mingle with people they’d never usually have access to, allowing them to broaden their skill-set and as a result become an invaluable asset to the agencies they work for.”

Team Eastwood was mentored by Jo Arden, head of strategy at 32Red and Oliver Hill, board account director at DLKW Lowe. The team consisted of:

- Matt Box, Ogilvy & Mather
- Alexander Douise, Grey London
- Shauna Frey, Google UK
- Olivia Hanson, DLKW Lowe
- Olivia Hunt, Langland
- Liam Kennedy, Immediate Media
- Jessica Marke, Maxus
- Katy Phillips, The Partners
- Piers Raffo, Dare
- Benedict Smith, adam&eveDDB

Fast Forward was set up 14 years ago by legendary industry godfather Jeremy Bullmore, described by Campaign as "quite possibly the most admired man in advertising" and is currently run by Mark Lund as chairman.

The judges consist of some of the biggest names in the industry; John Bartle, chairman of the judging panel (BBH), Nick Theakstone (Group M), Mark Lund (Now) Wendy Proctor (Cabinet Office), Sheila Mitchell (Public Health England) and Zoë Osmond (NABS).

Participants were chosen by their employers and hail from adam&eveDDB, AMV BBDO, Channel 4, Dare, DLKW Lowe, Draftfcb, Grey London, Google UK, Immediate Media, Krow Communications, Langland, Maxus, Mindshare, Movement,  Now, Ogilvy & Mather, Omnicom Media Group, PHD, Posterscope, SapientNitro, Sevenstones, Universal MaCann, WPP.