Our Heritage

1938: IAA is born out of a luncheon involving 12 export advertising executives at the Harvard Club of New York organized by Thomas Ashwell, publisher of the Export trade & shipper magazine

1953: IAA shows exponential growth in members; 1160 members globally with 600 of them outside USA

1955: First IAA conference to be held outside USA; Zurich becomes host to the historic event

1957: Second IAA conference to be held in Europe, efforts to promote advertising self-regulation initiated at the conference in IAA Hague

1960: First Latin American conference organized in Venezuela

1964: First Young professional group formed by IAA in Venezuela. Dr. Rudolf Farner of Switzerland was elected as the first non-U.S. IAA World President

1973: First White Paper of IAA titled 'The Global Challenge of Advertising' is presented at the World Congress in Dublin in 1973. The paper recognized new urgencies, demanded new accomplishments and insisted that the IAA assume a role of world leadership in certain sectors of concern to marketers everywhere

1979: IAA starts its public service advertising program and staged the first ever World Public Service Advertising symposium in Brussels

1980: The IAA Education Program gets conceptualized and announced at the 1980 IAA World Congress in Durban. IAA finishes the decade 1980-1989 with 2,700 Individual Members in 74 countries with 36 Chapters. 82 Corporate and 28 Organizational Members

1991: The IAA launches ‘The Case for Advertising’, a worldwide Campaign for Advertising, a first-ever, all-media, pro-bono effort to explain the value of advertising to consumers (individuals and governments) and its benefit in our daily lives. The campaign receives over $US840 million in pro-bono space and time worldwide, in over 220 countries and territories

1994: IAA commissions study to analyze economic contribution of advertising to a country’s economy and results of the study get presented to government, bureaucrats, the media and the marketing communications business in 15 countries

1999: IAA finishes the millennium with 4,600 members in 93 countries, with 61 Chapters, 98 Corporate Members and 64 Organizational Members. Diversity of membership gets well spread out with 40% in Europe, 21% in Asia/Pacific, 18% in Middle East/Africa, 11% in Latin America & the Caribbean and 10% US/Canada

2005: IAA sustainable development initiative gets kick-started, an annual competition in which teams are challenged to develop an ad campaign on social/ environmental issues

2009: IAA creates “Hopenhagen” campaign representing the global advertising industry’s support of the United Nations Climate Change Conference. The website, www.Hopenhagen.org, gets 6,172,820 citizens globally to add their messages of hope and the campaign has $197.9MM in reported media value with a reach of 50+ countries

2009: IAA introduces the Digital Download Forum Series which was created to make key industry professionals share their views and expertise on the digital/online industry. The forums were presented in several key markets across the world

2010: InterAd Competition gets relaunched, client-sponsor Canon providing the funding

2010: IAA holds its 42nd World Congress at the historic Moscow Kremlin. 1,200 delegates from over 40 countries attend the event and it ends up as one of the largest ad industry gatherings of the year

2013: IAA celebrates its 75th Anniversary with a Global Leadership Forum in London, ‘What’s Coming Next?' featuring the global road map of industry trends, issues and opinions. Industry forecasts, consumer engagement, the outlook for ongoing media disruption, winning creativity etc. form the main topics of discussion. IAA ‘Champion’ awards gets initiated and is presented to key members from previous decades who had contributed their vision, leadership and services to the advancement of the IAA locally and globally

2014: Beijing hosts IAA's 41st World Congress with the Gala opening event being held at the historic Great Hall of the People in the presence of China's leading dignitaries. Over 1,400 delegates from 45 countries attend the event to hear world leaders and experts provide intelligence on industry issues, developments and future directions

2015: IAA Inspire Awards is conceptualized to celebrate ‘Champions’ and ‘Young Leaders' who accomplished leadership excellence and contributed their vision, ideas, and services to advance the IAA and enhance the marketing communications industry locally, regionally and globally

2015: IAA conducts the Africa Rising conference; the first of its kind to bring together the advertising and marketing communications practitioners working in or doing business with Africa. Speakers from Unilever, Diageo, Coca Cola, SAB Miller, Bata, Zenith Optimedia, Starcom Mediavest, Google, Bharti Airtel, Omnicom Group, P+G, Reckitt Benckiser, Stanbic Bank, MTN, the United Nations. grace the occasion and make the event a grand success

2018: IAA celebrates its 80th Anniversary by launching a new logo and a new value proposition as ‘The global compass of marketing communications’ rededicating itself to serve the brand marketing industry. The event also inaugurates the IAA Golden Compass Awards which hailed visionary leaders for guiding their organizations through today’s era of disruption and inspiring the industry at large by their achievements of global impact

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