The Gilded Gutter Bar Life

Since 1984 the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity has taken place in Cannes that pseudo glamorous city nestled on the French Riviera. The festival is big business. In 2019 the last edition of the festival to be held in person pre-pandemic generated revenues of $94m. Duncan Painter, the CEO of parent company Ascential, was certainly pleased. His compensation package that year totalled £1.7m. Despite the difficult headwinds caused by the pandemic, he felt that the business was in rude enough health in 2021 to purchase a further £1.5m worth of shares to add to his holding of £11m. In a world defined by inequality, it is worth noting that South Sudan, a country long racked by civil war, currently has a GDP only 50 times larger than the world’s premier advertising award show.

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