Media Alert/Photo Opportunity - Sir Richard Branson weighs in on the economy, entrepreneurship and marketing

    World-renown entrepreneur to reveal how to grow businesses and brands in
    a recession

    TORONTO, Jan. 22 /CNW/ - Sir Richard Branson, founder and chairman of the
Virgin Group, one of the world's most recognized and respected brands, will be
giving his take on the economy and how to beat the recession at a special
business luncheon during Advertising Week.
    Fresh from a summit of business leaders at 10 Downing Street that advised
Prime Minister Brown and the British government on how to manage its way out
of recession, Sir Richard Branson will give his views and talk about how he is
managing Virgin through this difficult time.
    Branson's keynote appearance at Advertising Week is a celebration of the
industry's exemplary creativity and its $24 billion contribution to the
Canadian economy. Proceeds from the luncheon will help support Richard
Branson's not-for-profit entrepreneurial foundation, Virgin Unite.
    In addition, aspiring young advertising students will have a
once-in-a-lifetime opportunity during Branson's visit to jumpstart their
careers. A hundred and fifty students from across Ontario will be paired with
teams from leading Toronto-based advertising agencies. Together they will
compete to produce a creative campaign for Virgin Mobile's RE(*)Generation
campaign, a non-profit initiative that supports at-risk Canadian youth. The
winning team selected by Sir Richard Branson will have the opportunity to see
their creative campaign developed and launched nationally in 2009, thanks to a
generous donation from Astral Media, a leading Canadian media company.

    Who:     Sir Richard Branson, the Virgin Group

    What:    Discussion on the economy, entrepreneurship and marketing
             Financial and Communications Industry Luncheon
             Advertising Week

    When:    Wednesday, January 28th, 2009

             12pm - 1pm:  Financial and Communications Industry luncheon

             1 pm - 2 pm: Discussion on the economy, entrepreneurship and
                          marketing with Sir Richard Branson

             2 pm:        Cheque presentation with Astral Media,
                          Sir Richard Branson and the winning student team

    Where:   Toronto Filmport, 225 Commissioners Street

    About Advertising Week

    Canada's inaugural Advertising Week ( is taking
place from January 26 to 30, 2009. The week is designed to celebrate the
advertising industry's social and economic impact to the Canadian landscape,
create a dedicated public platform to showcase the industry's creativity in
business communication, and to inspire and develop the next generation of
talent for this industry. The Institute of Communication Agencies (ICA)
(, the professional business association representing
Canada's communication and advertising agencies, is spearheading Advertising

    About the ICA

    The Institute of Communication Agencies or the ICA ( is
the professional business association which represents Canada's communication
and advertising agencies. ICA promotes thought leadership, higher standards
and best practices. It serves as the largest source of information, advice,
education and training for Canada's communication and advertising industry.
ICA's member agencies and subsidiaries account for over 75 per cent of all
national advertising in Canada, with an economic impact worth more than $18
billion annually.

For further information:

For further information: Media requiring further information,
accreditation, please contact: Keka DasGupta, Martine Lévy, DDB Canada, (416)
972-7727, (416) 972-7719,,

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