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Featuring

Paul Davies
UK CMO
MICROSOFT
Paul Davies Info Events
Paul leads the marketing activity for famous technology brands including Windows, Lumia, Surface, Bing, MSN, Office, Internet Explorer and Band.
With 20 years’ experience, he is noted for creating pioneering work that challenges convention, and for nurturing and developing talent to create future marketing leaders.
Paul has a strong track record in marrying the world of art, culture & entertainment with the digital capabilities of Microsoft, through unique talent collaborations such as the multi-awarded Brandon Generator online crowd-sourced interactive drama curated by Edgar Wright.
Paul is Chair of Institute of British Advertisers (ISBA), was recognised as one of the Hot 100 Digital Marketers (British Interactive Media Association), and was Awarded Marketer of the Year in 2011. He is a sponsor and mentor at the Marketing Academy, supporting the development of emerging talent in the industry.
Paul is a Board Trustee for Punchdrunk and Board member of the Featured Artist Coalition.
Dexter Fletcher
Actor, Director, Writer
Dexter Fletcher Info Events
After a career in top flight television and movies that spans four decades, Dexter has seamlessly moved behind the camera, with terrific results, first directing gritty comedy, Wild Bill, then moving on to the musical, Sunshine On Leith, and more recently, the wonderful Eddie The Eagle, which is in cinemas now. His big screen acting highlights include Guy Ritchie’s Lock Stock and Two Smoking Barrels and Matthew Vaughn’s Stardust, and Mike Leigh’s Topsy Turvy. His small screen work includes Press Gang, Hotel Babylon and HBO’s Band Of Brothers.
Alesha Dixon
Singer and TV personality
Alesha Dixon Info Events
There is a moment in every artist’s life when, with a little nod to Janet Jackson, fairy godmother of the modern diva, they feel the irresistible urge to step it up and take full control. For Alesha Dixon, that time is now. In a glittering career that has transformed her from Home Counties hopeful to household name Alesha has earned her stripes in the music business. Now it’s time to prove it, front of house and behind the scenes.
Alesha Dixon has worn many hats over her astonishing 16 year career. She opened her musical hand as a finger-snapping Rude Girl, one third of the brilliant Mis-Teeq, part of the original bedrock UKG scene that went on to the take the world (nobody brrrrrapped better than Alesha). Next she was the sleek millennial solo proposition, a finely tuned groove machine. In an unexpected career diversion – seriously, who takes the career swerve from 2step to the Ballroom? – she fashioned a brilliant second career as Saturday teatime TV royalty, first
at Strictly then Britain’s Got Talent. For her re-entry to pop’s top sphere in 2015, she is all about doing it her way.
Alesha Dixon has taken creative and business control of every aspect of her fourth solo record. It will be the first release on her Precious Stone Records label. Alesha has channelled a little of the energy from the propulsive TV record label drama Empire and will henceforth be her own Cookie Lyon. This time she’s the boss. ‘It feels great. I find the whole thing funny, in a way. Precious Stone Records? Little old me? But I also take it very seriously.’ ‘I feel like in many ways, I’ve done it all,’ Alesha says. ‘The whole music industry, the craziness, the pressure, the politics, you do get a buzz off it and want to be a part of it. I’ve been lucky that I’ve experienced small independents and huge majors, platinum albums and albums not coming out. I’ve been round the block on what the industry can do with you. But what I’ve never done is taken complete control of it all.’
Alesha is the singer and author of nine Top 10 singles and three platinum albums. Her musical gifts have been rewarded with MOBO awards and Brit nominations. Her effervescent single, ‘The Boy Does Nothing’, is a million seller and reached the Top 10 in 12 global territories. Her album, ‘The Alesha Show’ was one of only five platinum albums in Britain in 2010. She has proven time and again that British musical talent, delivered sincerely, from the heart and on point, can slay on the world stage. Now is the time to do everything on her terms. ‘I’ve got all that wealth of knowledge and I’m in the best place emotionally that I’ve been in my entire life. Put the two together and it’s added up to making the best and most personal record of my life which is all about doing it for the love. It’s all come back to the music.’
Alesha first thought about heading back into the musical milieu as long ago as 2012. ‘Then I fell pregnant with my little girl and that put it on hold for two years. You can’t seriously hope to give everything you need to a record while you’re breast-feeding,’ she says, letting out one of British pop’s most distinctive and defining laughs. After wrapping the 2014 series of BGT she stepped stridently back into the studio. ‘I just wanted to feel that buzz again. Writing is second nature to me. I think most songs are pre-written, without wanting to sound too mystical about it. The good ones are, anyway. Going into the studio is just a way of downloading them. You can only take into the studio your own life experience and the people you’ve met along the way. You’re accessing
something. Your soul has already decided what it is you want to say. You just have to be open to it.’
Because she’s the kind of artist that always needs her music to sound fresh and of a moment, she scrapped all previous work and started with a clean slate. In a tiny studio in Sweden she first hit musical gold-dust on a song that sounded in exactly the mould of her frame of mind, that reminded her why she was so in love with music in the first place. The big, bold, current sound of ‘Do It For Love’ sounded exactly where she wanted to be musically. This wasn’t music being made to major label instruction, it was intuitive and delivered from the heart. It slots seamlessly into a modern house sound honed in the musical universe of Clean Bandit, Keizsa and Jess Glynne only because these artists share a frame of reference on British pop/dance music, of which Alesha has been a long-term and key figurehead. ‘People will think it’s a love song but it’s actually about my love of music and how much I worship it and that’s what I’m doing it for now. After I had that one, I knew there was an album bursting to come out of me.’
Setting up business by herself was not an easy decision to make. Once she’d made sense of the move, it panned out perfectly for Alesha. ‘The traditional route of signing to a label as an artist doesn’t appeal to me so much because I’m not an 18-year-old trying to get my first break. I’ve got more of a business head now and I don’t want to sign away a 360 degree deal in order to catch the breaks. That’s the practical reason. But on a more personal and creative level I didn’t want to have to answer to anyone about the record. I’ve done the whole thing. I’ve been across everything creatively and taken it by the reigns. I do love the thrill and the chase of the music industry machine but the days of me needing my song to go top 10 are long gone.’ Something in the change of her frame of mind, this new confidence running clearly through the album is attributable to the changes in Alesha since becoming a mother. She’s even named and dedicated the mid-paced beauty Azura to her daughter.
Much as she’s immensely proud of the opening single from the suite, the brand new equality anthem ‘The Way We Are’, she won’t be disquieting herself with its stats. ‘That gauge of commercial success is not what I’m going to bed at night thinking about anymore.’ As well as the countless triumphs Ms Dixon has enjoyed in her brilliant career, there have been lows, too. ‘I’ve been there, believe me. I’ve lived it. I can remember getting a phone call from my manager when a radio station didn’t play a song from my first solo album. I remember crying on the phone, that feeling that this can’t happen without that support. That sucks. You’ve worked on this thing for a year and a half, it’s all you care about, it’s all you really know in that time and suddenly it’s all gone. I said to myself I refuse to ever feel like that again.’
If she’s thankful for the good times, she has to be grateful for the bad, too. ‘I can weirdly look back at that time quite fondly. It was an important thing for me to go through, it shifted something. I do think every single experience you have in life sets you up for the next one. What I did say, from that moment was that I had to empower myself and get myself into a position where I would never go back to that feeling.’ Her outlook has flipped 360 degrees into positivity. ‘I’ve made a record I love, I’ve funded it, I’ve put it out and I’ve kind of got the attitude of whatever will be, will be. First and foremost I had to love it. It’s scary, but I did it.’
Throughout it all, she’s kept her sense of humour. ‘I have been on a journey and what I’m very good at doing is putting life into perspective. There are so many people out there doing jobs that they don’t love. There are so many people struggling. I don’t want to get too deep but every day I
give thanks that I’m doing something I love, with a roof over my head, with security and these things I never take for granted. And I’ve done that through music. Music has always been my salvation, right from the beginning.’ Her new album is Alesha’s favourite yet. ‘This sounds like the future.’
Terry Waite
CBE

Terry Waite Info Events
For most of his life Terry Waite has worked in the area of international affairs and has worked in most of the worlds conflict zones. As a young man, whilst living in Uganda, he negotiated directly with the late General Amin for the release of hostages; and as a member of the Archbishop of Canterbury’s private staff was successful in aiding the freedom of hostages in Iran, Libya and Beirut. It was in Beirut that he was captured and spent almost five years in solitary confinement. In the apartheid years he worked closely with Bishop Desmond Tutu and has continued his work for the disadvantaged in South Africa. He was a joint founder of YCare, an agency working for the development of young people throughout the world. He is President of Emmaus for the homeless and a joint founder of Hostage UK. He has written several books ranging from a serious account of his years in captivity, Taken on Trust, to his latest book, a comic novel, The Voyage of the Golden Handshake. He believes that it is vital that we retain our humour in the face of some of the grim realities of life and that laughter is therapeutic for all of us. He is both an Anglican and a Member of the Society of Friends. He is not a pacifist but strongly believes that force should only be used as an absolute last resort. That, he says, has not been the case in recent years and has resulted in dreadful chaos right across the Middle East.
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2016 PARTNERS

Adobe


Adobe is the global leader in digital marketing and digital media solutions. Our tools and services allow our customers to create groundbreaking digital content, deploy it across media and devices, measure and optimize it over time, and achieve greater business success. We help our customers make, manage, measure, and monetize their content across every channel and screen.
Dennis Publishing


Dennis Publishing is one of the world’s leading independent publishers. Founded in 1974, the group consists of a number of operating companies in the UK and USA.

Although the group has experienced explosive growth over the past five years, even during the terrifying recession of 2009, success hasn't diminished our frontier spirit.

As a privately held group of companies, the Dennis Group is dedicated to delivering what customers and advertisers want, rather than concentrating on the somewhat narrower goals of stockholders and analysts.

Dennis Publishing is one of the world's fastest-growing independently owned media companies. Group turnover exceeds £85 million a year, excluding our subsidiary companies.

The company publishes over 70 magazines, digital magazines, Magbooks , websites, apps and mobile sites in the UK (including The Week, Auto Express, PC Pro, Viz and Men’s Fitness) and The Week in the US.

Dennis is also a major shareholder in Dovetail Services Ltd and owns the third party marketing company 3PM.

Dennis Publishing is privately owned by Felix Dennis.
ESI Media


The commercial department of the London Evening Standard, The Independent, i and London Live. We are dedicated to helping you connect with audiences across our titles and platforms. We will push boundaries to get the right solution for you.
Google


Google’s mission is to organize the world‘s information and make it universally accessible and useful.

Since our founding in 1998, Google has grown by leaps and bounds. From offering search in a single language we now offer dozens of products and services—including various forms of advertising and web applications for all kinds of tasks—in scores of languages. And starting from two computer science students in a university dorm room, we now have thousands of employees and offices around the world. A lot has changed since the first Google search engine appeared. But some things haven’t changed: our dedication to our users and our belief in the possibilities of the Internet itself.
The Guardian


Mail Brands


dmg media is one of the UK's leading media companies. We have a large portfolio of influential brands and businesses that reach 55% of the adult population at any time.

We are the consumer media company of DMGT, an international business built on entrepreneurship and talented people to provide businesses and consumers with high-quality analysis and insight, information, news and entertainment.
Media iQ


We translate insights into better performing, highly targeted digital advertising campaigns.

Our Performance solution is powered by sophisticated segmentation, scoring and targeting of users, equalling improved effectiveness and efficiency. We also deliver advanced Brand solutions like TV Sync and Social Sync.
News UK


News UK is part of News Corp – a global, diversified media and information services company focused on creating and distributing authoritative and engaging content to consumers throughout the world.

Our award-winning titles provide world class news, sport, comment and opinion.

The Sun is the most popular paper in the UK.

The Times, Sunday Times and Times Literary Supplement are among the most respected.

We respect our readers, champion their cause, and challenge the vested interests which confront them.

We charge for our journalism because we invest heavily in it.

We believe that a vibrant news industry is vital for a mature democracy.

We will provide our content on whatever platform which suits our customers.

Our mission is to secure a sustainable future for that distinct, high quality independent journalism.
Sky


About Sky
Sky is Europe’s leading entertainment company. The group serves 20 million customers across five countries: Italy, Germany, Austria, the UK and Ireland. We offer the best and broadest range of content, deliver market-leading customer service and use innovative new technology to give customers a better TV experience, whenever and wherever they choose.

Sky has annual revenues of over £11 billion and is Europe’s leading investor in television content with a combined programming budget of over £4.6 billion. The company employs 31,000 people and is listed on the London Stock Exchange (SKY).

About Sky Media
Sky Media is the advertising sales arm of Sky, offering an exciting array of opportunities on TV, online and on the go.

Reaching over 90% of the UK population, Sky Media represents all of Sky's channels and sites including Sky Sports, Sky News, Sky 1, Sky Movies, Sky Arts, Sky Atlantic and Sky Living. Sky Media also sells on behalf of a range of renowned broadcasters and channels including Discovery, National Geographic, History, MTV, FOX, NBC Universal, Nickelodeon and Comedy Central. Sky Media has offices in London, Manchester, Dublin and Cardiff.
ADARA


ADARA leverages global travel data to drive business performance.

Our marketing and insights platform, Magellan, transforms loyalty, search and booking data into actual knowledge to help companies architect their products and understand and reach customers.

Our unique data platform delivers actionable knowledge you can’t get anywhere else and fuels programmatic media buying.
AOL


AOL's Mission: To simplify the internet for consumers and creators by unleashing the world's best builders of culture and code.
Bauer Media


At Bauer Media we are home to more than 80 influential media brands with millions of personal relationships with engaged readers and listeners. Our multi-platform brands spanning magazines, radio, TV and digital reach over twenty two million UK adults.

Although we are one of the leading and trusted media partners, we are never afraid to try something new and are widely recognised and rewarded as being industry innovators. Some of our infamous brands include Grazia, Closer, Parkers, Empire, Magic, KISS, Key 103, Planet Rock, Radio Clyde, Kerrang!, Q, The Box, 4Music and Absolute Radio.

Here at Bauer we have a very clear vision; to connect audiences with excellent content through our multi-platform brands whenever, wherever and however they want.

Our vision is only achieved through the passion, creativity and dedication of our people. Whether they’re working behind the mic, creating the next hot off the press article or working tirelessly behind the scenes, every one of our employees is passionate about making a difference and is truly integral to our success.

We’re obsessed about our brands and relentless about going the extra mile to delight our audiences and customers alike.
Facebook


Founded in 2004, Facebook’s mission is to give people the power to share and make the world more open and connected. People use Facebook to stay connected with friends and family, to discover what’s going on in the world, and to share and express what matters to them.
Hearst Magazines UK


Hearst Magazines UK, Hearst Corporation’s principal business in the UK, is one of the UK’s leading media companies with 20 magazine brands and 20 digital assets.
Spotify


All your music is here.

Spotify gives you millions of songs at your fingertips. The artists you love, the latest hits, and new discoveries just for you. Hit play to stream anything you like.
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