The biggest spenders and personalities from the advertising and media worlds descended on the French Riviera this past week for Cannes Lions, an extravagant week-long party full of elaborate dinners, exclusive concerts and a limitless supply of rosé.
Tech companies like Facebook, YouTube and Twitter rented out sprawling beachside cabanas for the week to host meetings and schmooze with business partners.
Others, like Spotify and Verizon’s newly formed AOL-Yahoo tie-up, Oath, threw big parties with expensive musical performances. Medialink and iHeartMedia threw their very exclusive dinner party again this year where R&B star The Weeknd performed for celebrities like Ryan Seacrest and CEOs like Twitter’s Jack Dorsey.
But despite all the distractions — and there were plenty — Cannes is also a place where actual deals get done. Many ad buyers and ad sellers use the week to plan out spending for the second half of the year, and who shows up and who makes a scene can give you a good idea of the current pecking order for the industry.