AkzoNobel names creative partner for professional paints business

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AkzoNobel has appointed MullenLowe Group as the new creative agency partner for its paints global marketing organisation.  Effective immediately, the new partnership aims to deliver on the growth objectives and business opportunities of AkzoNobel’s professional paints activities.

It follows last year’s appointment of MullenLowe Group as the global creative partner for AkzoNobel consumer paints.

“AkzoNobel has been providing painters with the highest quality paints for more than 200 years,” said David Menko, CMO of the company’s paints business.

“We have a clear requirement for a strong creative partner in order to leverage our global presence and further build our professional brands. We feel MullenLowe Group is the right partner to deliver against our growth ambition for these brands as we continue to lead the way globally via our innovation, disruptive communication, and our passion to make people’s lives more liveable and inspiring with our products, services and tools,” Menko said.

Nuno Pena, global marketing director for AkzoNobel’s professional and pre-deco activities, added: “We are thrilled with the appointment of MullenLowe Group as our global agency partner for the paints business. The agency is a great partner for our consumer colleagues and we have already achieved some outstanding results on those brands. I am looking forward to their team bringing to bear their experience with our organisation, and their creativity to drive business success for our professional brands – such as Sikkens and Dulux Trade – and for audiences around the world.”

Jose Miguel Sokoloff, global president of the MullenLowe group creative council, said: “We are very proud of our relationship with AkzoNobel and the work that we have produced for the consumer paints organization. We’re excited to put the power of our challenger thinking and creativity to drive an unfair share of attention for the professional side of the business.”

[“Source-marketing-interactive”]

JWT wins creative mandate for Sintex

Sintex has appointed J Walter Thompson to handle its creative duties. The agency’s Mumbai office will handle the account that was won post a multi-agency pitch.

Samir Joshipura

“Sintex is a brand driven by innovation. We are now expanding our presence in new categories to drive growth and in JWT India, with its in-depth experience and expertise in building winning brands, we have found a perfect partner for the task at hand,” said Samir Joshipura, Group CEO, Sintex.

Sintex appointed the agency based on their strategic thinking, consumer mapping and innovative creative solutions. The agency’s mandate is to provide strategic and creative inputs across its plastic business, which includes water storage, interiors, electrical, environmental and industrial solutions portfolio.

Rajesh Gangwani

Commenting on the win, Rajesh Gangwani, Managing Partner, JWT Mumbai, said, “We look forward to partnering Sintex. Sintex is a household name and a brand that is synonymous with the category of water storage solutions. There are exciting plans ahead and our team is all geared up to create memorable communication that connects with the audience and creates more growth opportunities for the brand.”

[“Source-bestmediainfo”]

Can Delhi become the new creative capital of India?

Kolkata, the capital of India during the imperial days, also served as the creative capital of India for the longest time. Then somewhere in ’80s, the winds of change started blowing and the creative capital left the Bengali bhadralok’s abode and moved to the country’s financial capital, Mumbai, where both clients and money were. That was also the time when migration started happening in hordes and the creative talent was also moving where the money was.

Delhi, in the midst of all this, remained out of radar for creative minds as creativity here was limited to DAVP ads and political advertising.

But the times have now changed and Delhi is emerging as the top city on the map for the creative community.

In last year’s Cannes wins from India, the numbers from Delhi were more or less the same as Mumbai. The story is the same if we also consider Effies, which proves that Delhi’s advertising industry has come out of yoke and is successful at proving its mettle.

A lot of the network agencies’ senior professionals, NCDs (National Creative Director) and CCOs (Chief Creative Director), are based in Delhi. For example, Swati Bhattacharya of FCB, Soumitra Karnik of Dentsu, Ajay Gahlaut of Ogilvy and Prateek Bhardwaj of McCann. The JWT and Ogilvy offices are bigger than the Mumbai offices.

Akashneel Dasgupta

Akashneel Dasgupta, Senior Vice-President and Executive Creative Director, ADK Fortune, said, “Things have changed now. A lot of new categories have emerged and become the biggest spenders in the category. For example, mobile phones have become the biggest spenders. Actually, the biggest spenders from Mumbai have reduced their spending.”

He said, “With most of the production houses located in Mumbai, most of the shooting takes place in Mumbai. And the impression that goes out is that Mumbai is doing a lot of work, but actually more work is happening in Delhi.”

A few of the industry men believe that even after performing on a par with the Mumbai office, they have to satisfy with less. The struggle to reach the top and be known is much more in Delhi than in Mumbai.

Ajay Gahlaut

Recently, Ajay Gahlaut, Chief Creative Officer, Ogilvy North and Deputy CCO, Ogilvy India, took to Facebook to share his point of view for the newer generation joining the advertising industry. He wrote there, “Frankly if you’re a sensible, rational human being, it’s a no-brainer. Work in Mumbai. You are closer to the powers that be. Your work is seen and appreciated faster. Clients are more inclined to see agencies as partners instead of mere suppliers. So you will get more attention and respect. You will get applauded and feted if you do great work for the client. Wide smiles and a positive atmosphere will greet you in most client boardrooms.”

He went on further, “You will, as you gain seniority and experience, be called for various jury duties of diverse award shows. Here you will network with the top people in the industry on equal footing. People will take you seriously and listen to your opinion with interest. This will enhance your employability and value in the job market.”

On the contrary, he added, “On the other hand, if you decide to stay on in Delhi. You will be a faceless name on an email list for your seniors and superiors in Mumbai. You start working on proactive ideas because you want to win awards. You win awards. And more awards. Year after year. Suddenly one day you realise that despite winning so many awards on your own steam, you’ve never been called as a juror for any award show. While some of your juniors in the Mumbai office are going for their sixth jury duty in as many years. Then it dawns on you that there are two reasons for this. One, the award show people simply don’t see you enough to remember you. And second, it’s simpler and cheaper to get a jury member from Mumbai. Uber is cheaper than Indigo after all.”

Prathap Suthan

Sharing his past experiences and the current state of affairs in Delhi on Facebook, Prathap Suthan, Chief Creative officer, Bang In The Middle, said that in his previous organisation, the working conditions were bad. Even after producing good work, the Delhi team had to satisfy with less in comparison to Mumbai. He further wrote, “One fine day, when the biggest of the egos from Mumbai came down to our office to generally smirk at us and our plight, I happened to ask him that why is it that despite the fact we are almost five times larger than Mumbai, our office is pathetic and the Mumbai office is a piece of stunning art and architecture? The big man replied. “Clients come to the showroom. They don’t go to the factory. You should be lucky you have a place to sit.” End of story and discussion. That sort of summed up and told me just exactly how Mumbai looked at Delhi. It happened, and it happens.”

Ashish Limaye

Ashish Limaye of Happy Finish thinks that Delhi makes one a tough person and Mumbai has its own set of trouble. “Mumbai has its own troubles of battling the infrastructure and sleeping in plush pigeon holes called apartments. Delhi in spite of its rugged approach and palatial living makes you tough to live beyond advertising in a job called life. Both I’d say must have on any blokes wish list. Nice read as always.”

Malvika Mehra

Not agreeing with Gahlaut and Suthan’s point, Malvika Mehra of Tomorrow Creative Lab, said, “I don’t agree with Ajay (Gahlaut). I think in our limited capacities, we still can make the place what we want it to be. And negate the perceptions. Personally speaking, the best years of my working life actually came from a sudden ‘posting’ to the original underdog, Bangalore. Where great work on Bingo! Lenovo, Allen Solly, IBM, Titan happened. Great strategists, copy, art and account management folks happened. And awards happened.”

Amit Akali

Seconding Mehra’s thought, Amit Akali, Chief Creative Officer, What’s Your Problem, said, “I think you can make the most of it absolutely anywhere. Every place has its advantages and disadvantages. Now Bangalore also has a National Creative Director at Dentsu India (Simi Sabhaney), Happy Mcgarrybowen’s work is good and appreciated. Every place has its advantages and disadvantages and makes one stronger.”

Although the times have changed and Delhi is getting its long due share of accolades, the perception still stays that Mumbai is the hub of advertising. Kyoorius, Effies, Olive Crown and most of the industry awards happen in Mumbai.

Jitender Dabas

Jitender Dabas, Chief Strategy Officer, McCann India, said that it is more of a perception now than the reality. He said, “The advertising industry has changed in terms of its power and equation, but somehow all the industry bodies are Mumbai-based.”

Akali added, “Like it or not, Abby awards meeting is happening and the jury will meet in Mumbai and the people from Mumbai will find it easier to come for it. Therefore, automatically the jury is made more of Mumbai people. I am not saying it is a rule. Effies for an exception has a Delhi round of jury too. But the fact is that the ecosystem is based in Mumbai.”

Dasgupta making a strong point here, said, “There is a certain network in Mumbai among the senior creatives. They hang around together across the agencies. For Delhi people, it is a bit difficult to be a part of that network. Delhi people are not normally available at these awards. The agency has to bear the cost to send people to the awards.”

Therefore to sum it up, Mumbai is perceived to be the capital city of advertising. But the scenario is changing and it’s no more about the cities but how one makes the best out of the advantages and disadvantages of the cities.

[“Source-bestmediainfo”]

Creative Muvo 2c Review

Creative Muvo 2c Review

HIGHLIGHTS

  • The Muvo 2c can be used as a standalone MP3 player
  • It performs well with vocals and can get really loud
  • The Creative Muvo 2c is priced at Rs. 4,999

Creative is a familiar name when it comes to speakers and headphones. In its early days, it was the go-to brand for PC audio components, and today it sells a diverse range of consumer audio peripherals. Its Muvo series of portable Bluetooth speakers has generally been targeted at young people and those with active lifestyles, which is reflected in the products’ bright colours and snazzy designs.

We’ve reviewed a few of them in the past, including the Muvo 10, Muvo 20, and Muvo Mini. Today, we’ll be testing one of the company’s recent launches in India, the Muvo 2c. This pocket-sized speaker boasts of a water-resistant body and some interesting usage modes. With a sticker price of Rs 4,999, let’s see if it’s worth recommending.

Creative Muvo 2c design and features

The Muvo 2c ships in a clear acrylic box so you can see it from all sides. Inside, you get the speaker itself, a Micro-USB cable for charging and PC connectivity, a quick start guide, and warranty leaflets. The speaker is available in a range of bright colours internationally, but only the red, blue and black options are being sold in India. It easily fits in the palm of your hand so carrying it around isn’t a problem, and it’s fairly light at just 159g. The speaker has a plastic body with a rubberised coating, which gives it some grip. There’s a metal mesh covering the speaker in the front but no protection for the passive radiator at the back. This could be prone to damage if you’re not careful when transporting the speaker around.

The two rubber strips on the bottom offer good stabilisation, as even with bass-heavy tracks at full volume, the speaker doesn’t move about. There’s a rubber flap on the side which protects the 3.5mm aux input, microSD card slot, and Micro-USB port. However, the rubber flap is a bit to soft so re-sealing it takes a bit of effort.

Creative Muvo 2c buttons ndtv Creative Muvo 2c

 

The Muvo 2c has a series of five hexagonal buttons on the top, along with a microphone and two LED indicators. The first button powers the speaker on or off, and the Bluetooth button is used for pairing and Play/ Pause functions. The third button, labeled M for mode, lets you switch sources between Bluetooth, aux in, microSD, and USB. The colour of the right-hand side LED light tells you which mode you’re in. You get a voice prompt only when you are ready to pair the speaker with a device but for everything else, you have to know what the colour of the LED means. The first LED on the left lights up red when the device is charging.

The Muvo 2c can handle a bit of dust and light splashes of water thanks to the IP66 certification, but it isn’t designed to be submerged under water. You can connect a second Muvo 2c speaker to it and use them in a stereo configuration. It also doubles up as a standalone MP3 player if you use a microSD card. The speaker supports cards of up to 128GB in capacity, and file formats including FLAC, MP3, WAV, and WMA. You also use the Sound Blaster Connect app for Android and iOS to browse through songs on a microSD card and switch sources remotely.

Creative doesn’t specify the size of the driver or supported frequency range, other than the fact that it’s a single full-range audio driver. It only supports the SBC Bluetooth audio codec but you can also answer calls using the built-in microphone.

Creative Muvo 2c ports Creative Muvo 2c

Creative Muvo 2c performance and battery life

There’s no NFC to aid in the pairing process, but doing it manually is quite painless. You can pair the speaker with multiple devices but you can only actively use one of them at a time. In order to play music from another source, you’ll have to first disconnect the one that’s currently playing.

The Muvo 2c is compatible with Creative’s Sound Blaster Connect app for your smartphone and Sound Blaster Control Panel for Windows and macOS. Sound Blaster Connect is a bit flaky on iOS, and it simply refused to detect the speaker despite our persistent efforts. On Android, the app managed to detect the speaker but kept saying it was ‘disconnected’, despite us being able to play songs, so that wasn’t very useful.

The Sound Blaster Control Panel app works better, and we tried it on a Mac. Here, you can switch between different audio profiles (Music, Movies, and Gaming) and customise each one with an equaliser preset, or adjust audio characteristics like boosting dialogues, etc. The firmware of the Muvo 2c can also be upgraded using this software. However, you don’t need the software to use the speaker with a Mac or PC, as simply plugging it into a USB port does the trick.

creative muvo 2c app ndtv creative mauve 2c

 

We dumped a bunch of audio test files onto a 32GB microSD card and the speaker had no trouble playing them. To skip or go to a previous track, you can use the Mode button along with the volume up or down buttons. The files are played in sequence, even if they are in different folders.

As a speakerphone, the Muvo 2c does an okay job, but it’s not great. We found ourselves having to go really close to the speaker in order for the caller to hear us clearly.

For a single-driver speaker of this size, the Muvo 2c gets really loud. Unfortunately, it feels strained once you push the volume beyond 85 percent. Here, the bass from the passive radiator also begins to diminish and the vocals and highs tend to overpower them. At moderate volumes, the speaker is able to deliver a decently wide soundstage with a fairly open and detailed mid-range. In Hotel California by The Eagles, the subtle thump of the bass drum is audible thanks to the passive radiator, and the cymbals have good separation from the other instruments.

The Muvo 2c struggles a bit with heavy bass tracks such as Starboy by The Weeknd at high volume levels, and isn’t very punchy at lower volumes either. We also noticed an intermittent glitch when using it with iOS devices, where the volume sync between the speaker and the phone would randomly break. This meant that changing the volume level on the phone would have no effect on the speaker’s volume. The only way to fix this would be to turn Bluetooth off and then on again on our iPhone.

Creative promises up to six hours of life with the built-in 650mAh battery, but we got much less than that when we tested the Muvo 2c. With the volume set to about 70 percent, we managed get only 3 hours and 32 minutes of continuous music playback, which isn’t great. With such a low battery capacity, there’s only so much you can hope for. You don’t get any audio cues about the battery level either, just a blinking red LED. You can check the battery level by double-pressing the Mode button, which makes the right LED change from green to yellow, purple or red, depending on the level.

Verdict
The Creative Muvo 2c is nice-looking little Bluetooth speaker which packs in quite a bit of functionality for its size. We love its design (although some protection for the radiator would have been preferred), and the fact that it can be used as a compact standalone music player. The IP66 rating and the ability to use it as a USB audio device are also very nice bonuses. However, the single audio driver and passive radiator fall a bit short in delivering good bass and soundstaging. If what you’re after is great audio quality, the UE Wonderboom is a better pick for just a little more money. At its current price, the Muvo 2c feels a little too expensive as well.

Creative has an alternative called the Muvo 1c priced at Rs. 3,499 which is similar to the 2c in terms of dimensions and driver specifications, but that it lacks the microSD card slot and USB audio support, and is only available in one colour in India.

If you don’t mind compromising on battery life, the Muvo 2c is decent-sounding and versatile Bluetooth speaker.

Price (MRP): Rs 4,999

Pros

  • Compact and rugged body
  • Crisp vocals and treble
  • Varied usage modes
  • IP66 water- and dust-resistant

Cons

  • Exposed radiator
  • Mediocre battery life
  • Flaky apps

Rating (Out of 5)

  • Design: 3.5
  • Performance: 3.5
  • Value for money: 3.5
  • Overall: 3.5

[“Source-gadgets.ndtv”]