FP7 punishes Doha office over Lynx scam scandal

April 23, 2009

Several creative staff are parting company with FP7 Doha and the office is handing back all of its Dubai Lynx awards, it was announced today in the wake of the scam ads scandal.

Parent group Fortune Promoseven has issued a statement following the conclusion of its internal investigation into the affair.

The action has been welcomed by the organisers of last month’s Dubai Lynx, who are overhauling their entry regulations in light of the recent issues.

The names of the staff leaving FP7 Doha have not been disclosed – and nor whether they have resigned or been fired. However, it appears likely that creative director Fadi Yaish will be among those moving on.

Fortune Promoseven’s full statement is as follows:

“Fortune Promoseven had committed to thoroughly investigate FP7 Doha’s entries into Dubai Lynx 2009. This internal investigation has now been concluded.

“It seems our strict policies and procedures for awards entries were circumvented. This is clearly unacceptable to our company.

“As a strong demonstration of the seriousness with which we view such behaviour, it has been decided that FP7 Doha will hand back all of its awards from the Dubai Lynx festival, and FP7 Doha has also been instructed not to submit any entries to Cannes Lions 2009.

“Corrective actions are being taken and several staff responsible will part ways with the company. In addition, FP7 Doha is strengthening its policies and procedures to ensure compliance for all future awards entries.”

Philip Thomas, CEO of Lynx organisers Cannes Lions, said: “Promoseven’s decision to have FP7 Doha return all awards – including bona-fide winners – shows real intent.

“Dubai Lynx is about lifting creativity for clients in the region and this action sends a signal to the market that this is what the focus of Lynx will be in the future.

“We will announce changes to the 2010 entry critera shortly.”

The outcome of a separate investigation by Lynx organisers into entries from other agencies is yet to be published.

See earlier posts for the background to this story.