For many people and in many ways, 2016 was an annus horribilis we would all rather forget. As the New Year's hangovers start to wear off and our memories start to return, indulge us in allowing the optimism of a fresh start to guide us on a look back at our top moments from last year.
The author, with his therapy dog, deeply reflecting on 2016.
Sónar+D is a technology-meets-creativity conference that has run concurrently to the Sónar electronic music festival in Barcelona since 2013. Our CEO and co-founder, Martin Adams, lead us to a podium finish in the pitch competition alongside some seriously impressive digital players.
Unfortunately, we don't have any photos to share because Martin lost his phone in the mosh when he snuck out to Sónar music festival for a proper heads down sesh.
While everyone back home was riding the rollercoaster of emotions that was Brexit, we were sunning ourselves on the French Riviera for Cannes Lions, the largest annual advertising event in the world. We were invited to the festival to showcase our amazing tech at the Lions Innovation Hub as part of the Unilever Foundry and R/GA's academy; the only company to be involved in both!!
It was also a fertile testing ground for our handy Instagram guide (available here).
With speakers ranging from Spike Jonze to Ban Ki-Moon and glitzy parties to attend (and pitching at YouTube beach!), it was certainly an experience we won't be forgetting anytime soon. The best part? We get to do it again this year!
Festival of Marketing (October)
Our two dear leaders, Tom G and Martin, were both invited to be panellists at the Festival of Marketing, a two-day marketing extravaganza held in London every year. Tom G spoke on how augmented intelligence is helping to shape customer experiences, and Martin gave his take on how to go about creating a 360° video campaign.
We were one of four digital media and technology brands invited to partner with BBC as part of their Labs programme, with view to forming a partnership with BBC Worldwide.
Here's the man with the golden voice, Gus, about to be exterminated!!!
We were invited to host a panel at Mindshare's annual Huddle event - a series of interactive, intimate and informal panels, a festival of thinking and ideas. Throughout the event, we used our technology to assist Wembley to Soweto in producing their photograph portfolio, culminating in our co-founders Martin and Tom G co-chairing a discussion on AI and creativity.
Meanwhile, COO Tom B found his long-lost forest family.
After beating out 1000s of brands, our journey to the Palace began with a boot camp in October. Out of the 42 brands in attendance, we were one of the final 12 which were selected to present a pitch at St James's Palace for over 300 guests (including the Duke of York, who founded the event in 2014).
The day started shakily, with a flat tire on the way to the Palace. But it ended on a high note, with co-founder Tom G meeting HRH Queen Elizabeth II who observed: "I guess you are pre-supposing what brands want, very clever." Couldn't have said it better ourselves.
We launched our blog in early December as part of our commitment to producing interesting and useful insight into our favourite topics.
So keep an eye on this space - you can subscribe to email updates to make sure you never miss a post. Plenty of great content coming your way.
It was pretty exciting for us to be counted as part of a global gathering of over 3,500 innovators. Aside from manning our exhibition booth, there were also plenty of interesting panels and discussions to see.
There's not much to say here, because there's not much we remember about it. But we definitely were adorable, and a merry time was had by all.
And there's still more :
Now that you've seen the team and all the cool stuff we got up to last year, click here to find out what we're doing this year or click below to find out more.