Headline | June 15, 2016

Forward Media’s #BigLiveHack

At Forward Media, we’re constantly challenging ourselves to innovate and find new ways to tackle client briefs, solve marketing and customer challenges and pioneer new ways of using media and technology.

The Big Live Hack was our latest initiative to ensure our people are exposed to new thinking, new techniques, and new technology, to ensure we are well placed to help O2 with their ongoing business and marketing challenges.


Through our innovations team, 18 Havas and in collaboration with IBM Watson and the Havas Cognitive accelerator, we recruited a hybrid hackathon team made up of developers, designers and data scientists from the Tech City community along with members of the Forward planning teams, to take part in a two day hackathon aboard a work-fit London bus at one of the marketing community’s largest calendar events, Media 360, with the objective of using Artificial Intelligence technologies  to make O2 Priority more personal to customers.

A range of mentors joined us across the two days to offer their experience including Daniel Rosen, Global Director of Advertising at Telefonica, Dara Nasr, Managing Director of Twitter UK, and Nigel Clarkson Commercial Director of Yahoo UK & Ireland. ‘Hot’ A.I. start-up Seldon was also in attendance alongside IBM Watson to help teams crunch their data and leverage the power of predictive analytics platforms.

At the end of the two days, the teams pitched their ideas to a panel of judges including O2’s Innovation and Capability Lead, Dan Michelson, Collider Co-Founder, Rose Lewis and Forward’s Managing Partner, Simon Taylor, whom dubbed team ‘Predictive Priority’ the winner for their idea around personalised offers.

Dan Michelson from O2 said ‘The guys were really motivated from start to finish, really open about their ideas and I thought they presented them really well. Tapping into AI’s that are available from the big corporates is definitely where we need to go when it comes to looking at news ways to advertise our products.’

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