Clios: Lifetime Achievement Prize to Serpa

MIAMI Marcello Serpa of Omnicom Group’s AlmapBBDO in Sao Paulo, Brazil, last night was honored with the 2008 Clio Lifetime Achievement Award at a gala dinner at the Gansevoort South Hotel in South Beach, Fla.

Serpa, 45, studied visual and graphic arts in Germany and worked for various shops there and in Brazil before joining AlmapBBDO in 1993 as cd and co-CEO alongside Jose Luiz Madeira. The two went on to build one of Brazil’s most revered creative shops, winning among its many accolades Agency of the Year at Cannes in 2000 and 45 Clio statues for clients such as Volkswagen, Pepsi, Audi and what has become a showcase creative account around the world, Havaianas, a Brazilian sandal brand.

On accepting his Clio Lifetime Achievement prize, Serpa thanked former BBDO global chief Allen Rosenshine for having faith in his abilities. “[He] bet on us based on a videotape of me and my partner talking,” Serpa said.

He added, “We have a very clear vision and my vision is to be happy. I love simple ideas.”

BBDO worldwide CCO David Lubars said of Serpa’s work: “His stuff sparkles. It makes viewing better.”

Andrew Robertson, global CEO of BBDO, described Serpa’s style as “simple and breathtakingly fresh,” and he joked, “That’s why he’s managed to achieve a lifetime achievement award in half a lifetime.”

About 400 people attended last night’s event. The Clios and Adweek are units of the Nielsen Co.