The Judges

Don Barnes Media Director, Ogilvy & Mather/OgilvyOne Worldwide Managing Director, OgilvyInteractive Worldwide Toronto Don Barnes has 17 years of experience in the industry, having held senior media and IT positions with a number of Toronto agencies. He joined OgilvyOne Worldwide as...

Don Barnes

Media Director, Ogilvy & Mather/OgilvyOne Worldwide

Managing Director, OgilvyInteractive Worldwide


Don Barnes has 17 years of experience in the industry, having held senior media and IT positions with a number of Toronto agencies. He joined OgilvyOne Worldwide as media director in early 1994, and took on the responsibilities of managing director for the OgilvyInteractive group the following year. In 1997, he was handed the media director assignment for O&M, completing his portfolio. In the course of his career, Barnes has worked on a wide range of accounts, including automotive, business to business, entertainment, financial, information technology, packaged goods, retail and telecommunications.

Susan Beck

Media Director

Highwood Communications, Calgary

Susan Beck has 15 years of experience in media planning and buying. She is well known for her knowledge, intuitive abilities and strategic planning skills. Outside the office, Beck enjoys fine wines, and is a self-professed TV sports junkie. She is an avid golfer as well, and freely admits that her scores are some of the grossest rating points she’s ever seen.

Jeff Berry

Media Supervisor

Lanyon Phillips Communications, Vancouver

A graduate of Sheridan College, Jeff Berry began his media career seven years ago at Bates Canada. From there, he headed for B.C. (with a little round-the-world-trip along the way) to join BBDO Vancouver. He now heads the media department at Lanyon Phillips, where his current client responsibilities include Boston Pizza International, National Money Mart, BC Hydro and BC Hot House Foods.

Philip Chant

Senior Vice-President, Media

Corporate Communications Ltd., Halifax

Philip Chant joined CCL in 1991. Prior to that, he worked in Halifax with McArthur, Thompson & Law Advertising and Public Relations, Eastern Provincial Airways, Impact Publishing Limited, Wilshar Advertising and Ray Torresan & Associates. A graduate of Ryerson Polytechnical University in Toronto, he came to Halifax by way of Montreal, where he toiled for Torresan, as well as Pepsi-Cola Canada, Air-Time Quality Sales and CFCF Radio.

Hélène Clément

Vice-President, Media Director

Armada Agence de publicité, Montreal

Hélène Clément began her marketing career with The Bay in 1976, as special events and promotions manager. She entered the media business in 1982, working over the years with a number of agencies, including McKim Advertising, Scali McCabe Sloves, BCP and PNMD Communication. Most recently, she joined Armada to develop the media business within the agency. Clément is known for her innovative approaches to media, as well as her passion for and commitment to the media industry.

Alain Desormiers


Touché! média-marketing, Montreal

Alain Desormiers possesses some 15 years of media experience, having worked in that time for both media agencies (Stratégem, Mediavision, Media Experts) and media companies (MusiquePlus, Omni and Radiomutuel). In 1995, he launched his own agency, Touché! In 1998, Touché! ranked third among Quebec agencies in Strategy’s Best Media Operation survey; Desormiers himself was named Quebec’s top media director in last year’s report. A graduate of University of Montreal, he serves actively in several industry associations.

Sara Hill

Senior Vice-President, Managing Director

M2 Universal, Toronto

For the past 20 years, Sara Hill has been involved in media planning and buying for a number of Canada’s leading national and retail advertisers, in categories ranging from agriculture to automotive, financial services to packaged goods, cosmetics to beer.

Debra Lamb

Vice-President, National Media Director

Parallel, Calgary

Debra Lamb is one of the most experienced media professionals in Western Canada. Her 13-year career has included stints at Palmer Jarvis, FCB/Ronalds Reynolds and Calder Bateman, where she was media manager for two years. At Parallel, she is responsible for a busy department that delivers a wide range of services, including in-depth research, planning, negotiation and post analysis benchmarking. She also oversees Parallel’s recruitment practice. Building on her experience in traditional media, Lamb helped to pioneer online advertising in Calgary, scoring major wins with innovative campaigns for both Canadian Airlines and Schlumberger Canada.

Bruce Neve

Vice-President, Media

The Media Edge, Toronto

Bruce Neve began his career in media at Baker Lovick Advertising in the early 1980s. His experience includes stints as vice-president, media director with Saatchi & Saatchi, and as associate media director with Scali McCabe Sloves. He has spent the last 13 years at Young & Rubicam (now The Media Edge). Neve believes strongly in a ‘beyond the numbers’ approach to media planning and execution, founded on a thorough understanding of the consumer, brands and media pathways.

Karena Phidd

Vice-President, Media

Gee, Jeffery & Partners Advertising, Toronto

Karena Phidd joined Gee, Jeffery in 1998. With 13 years of experience working for agencies such as Palmer Jarvis DDB and Initiative Media, she brings to the job a passion for integration and collaboration, a reputation for developing innovative strategies and an understanding that media is, first and foremost, a creative discipline.

Penny Stevens

Managing Partner

The Media Company/MBS, Toronto

Penny Stevens brings more than two decades of experience to her current position at The Media Company/MBS, a company she first joined 16 years ago. In the course of her career, she has worked on such varied categories as fashion, fragrance, health and beauty, packaged goods, automotive, food and beverage, retail and communications.

Ann Stewart

Vice-President, Media Communications

The Brainstorm Group, Toronto

A media professional for more than 15 years, Ann Stewart joined The Brainstorm Group as partner and vice-president in 1995. Stewart’s previous experience includes five years as a sales manager at Mediacom, where she made a significant contribution to business development. She also spent five years at MacLaren McCann as brand planning manager for General Motors of Canada, and three years at Harrison, Young, Pesonen & Newell working on a variety of packaged goods accounts.

Ann Wood

Associate Media Director

MaxxMedia, Toronto

Ann Wood has enjoyed more than 20 years of agency experience in both Toronto and Montreal, with time off for good behaviour and a couple of kids. It has been her good fortune to work with outstanding mentors on some of the strongest media brands in the business, at Ogilvy & Mather, Vickers & Benson, BCP, Grey Advertising, SMW and now MaxxMedia. For the record, she notes that there are two Ann/e Woods in the Canadian agency business – a source of frequent confusion – and identifies herself as ‘the old one.’

Also in this report:

* Bates takes the cake p.BMP2

* MaxAir fires on all cylinders: Multi-tiered plan for high-menthol gum was imbued with irreverence p.BMP3

* Dentyne Ice kisses up to teens with party promo: Initiative was designed to drive both brand awareness and sales p.BMP4

* Kool-Aid placement reflected fun, refreshment p.BMP6

* Aussie creates ‘in your face’ presence: Repositions brand as funky, outrageous p.BMP8

* Guerrilla tactics get Panasonic noticed: Campaign used underground channels to reach club crowd p.BMP10

* Much VJ follows his Natural Instincts on air p.BMP12

* Chapters stands out in dot-com crowd: Multimedia approach helped retailer create perception of market and category dominance p.BMP15

* Campbell’s cooks up targeted advertorial: Partners with CTV, magazines to create a presence beyond traditional ad buy p.BMP16

* Looking at Philips through fresh eyes: Redefinition of target market sparked departure from the traditional choice of television p.BMP18

* Jays plan hits home run p.BMP21

* Minute Maid aims for morning ownership p.BMP24

* Western Union a global Villager p.BMP28

* Scotiabank breaks out of the mold p.BMP32

* Clearnet clusters creative: Complementary boards were positioned in proximity to one another to maximize visibility, engage consumer p.BMP38

Meat and plant-based sales are both strong at Maple Leaf

Both priority areas performed well in the company's full-year results, helped by a boost in marketing for new products.
Maples Leaf All Natural 4

Maple Leaf Foods reported higher Q4 and full-year 2020 sales, driven by its sustainable meats and plant-based proteins. 

The CPG co. reported quarterly sales of $1.13 billion, up from $1.02 billion for Q4 2019, as well as net earnings of $25.4 million, compared to $17.5 million for the same period the year prior (an increase of 45.2%).

For full fiscal 2020, the company reported a total increase of 9.2% in sales, driven by what it says is “strong growth in both the meat and plant protein groups.”

“We have repositioned our portfolio towards two high-growth categories now representing 20% of our annual sales generating a compounded growth rate in excess of 25% over the last three years,” says Michael McCain, the company’s president and CEO.

Meat protein group sales  comprised of prepared meats, ready-to-cook and ready-to-serve meals, snack kits, value-added fresh pork and poultry products that are sold to retail, foodservice and industrial channels, and agricultural operations  grew 11.3% for the quarter. 

Meanwhile, sales of plant protein products  refrigerated plant protein brands such as Lightlife and Field Roast, premium grain-based protein, and vegan cheese products sold to retail, foodservice and industrial channels  was up 5.5% over the same period. 

Sales growth for its meat portfolio was driven by “a favourable mix-shift towards sustainable meats and branded products,” but also growth in exports to Asian markets, and pricing actions implemented to mitigate inflation and other structural cost increases, according to the company. Strong demand in the retail channel was offset by lower volume in foodservice as a result of COVID-19.

For its plant-based offerings, sales for 2020 were $210.8 million compared to $176.4 million last year, representing a growth of 19.5%, or 18.1% after excluding the impacts of foreign exchange. The segment was driven by expanded distribution of new products, continued volume increases in its existing portfolio, and pricing actions implemented to mitigate inflation and other structural cost increases.

SG&A expenses totalled $144 million for the plant group alone in 2020, with investments focused on advertising, promotion and marketing to build awareness, as well as supporting brand renovation and new product innovation. SG&A for meat proteins were $346.6 million for the full year, and the company says it expects SG&A levels and marketing investment in 2021 to be largely in line with where they were in 2020.

The company, which in 2019 announced it had gone carbon neutral, says it’s amplifying this commitment while “focusing on eliminating waste in any resources it consumes, including food, energy, water, packaging, and time.”