After the troubles in Thailand caused a cancellation of the annual Asia Pacific Advertising Festival, there were doubts if this show could regain its momentum. But as the show ended on Saturday last, it appeared the ‘Jump Start’ (the 2011 theme) had worked and the show was very much alive.

The support in terms of entries, delegates and sponsors was there, proving that nobody want to see this regional show disappear.

Perhaps what makes this show special is that it attracts the young creative talent from right around the region. The few middle-aged expats clutching their beers above expanding waistlines are vastly outnumbered by fresh eager young people. This new generation sits through every presentation eager to learn. The teams competing for the Young Lotus told AdAsia that they had learned so much from this experience and deeply appreciated the help of the mentors.

From the judge’s remarks, one can gather that many of the entries were not as good as they had expected, however, the winners were reaching greater heights. As two Jury Presidents pointed out, work that may have won a Gold a few years back would only be judged a Finalist in 2011.

The industry (as well as the organisers) should be grateful for the team of judges who volunteer to be locked up in rooms for days on end, each looking at hundreds of entries.

This year saw outstanding work from markets like China, Korea, Malaysia and India work competing with ads from past winning nations such as Thailand, Australia and Singapore.

Talking to the delegates at the end of show beach party, one was left in no doubt that AdFest 2011 was a great success. Congratulations to the organisers and, of course, to the talented winners.

Click here to see list of winners.