Bank on ex­pe­ri­ence for sur­vival

Ned­group ‘in­vested’ in story of pilot land­ing plane against odds

Weekend Argus (Saturday Edition) - - MEDIA& MARKETING - BREN­DAN SEERY

HEN you’re look­ing for a way to il­lus­trate the calm­ness, rea­son and ex­pe­ri­ence you get from a good in­vest­ment man­ager, what do you do? You look for a man who still be­lieves that he is not a hero and that he was just do­ing his job when he saved the lives of 160 peo­ple.

Cap­tain Ch­es­ley Sul­len­berger made his­tory on Jan­uary 15, 2009, when he safely ditched an Air­bus A320 air­liner in the Hud­son River in New York, af­ter both of its en­gines flamed out due to a bird strike.

All 155 pas­sen­gers and crew were res­cued from the icy river be­fore the plane sank. Avi­a­tion ex­perts have

Wcalled the land­ing one of the finest pieces of fly­ing in his­tory.

For the past two years, Ned­group In­vest­ments has been run­ning a cam­paign themed “Emo­tion vs Rea­son” and Phatheka Ncwana, head of mar­ket­ing, said that when it came to putting to­gether the lat­est TV com­mer­cial, the story of Sul­len­berger and US Air­ways flight 1549 “re­ally stood out”.

It per­fectly matched Ned­group In­vest­ments’ mes­sage, which was about the “im­por­tance of calm­ness and draw­ing on your ex­pe­ri­ence, es­pe­cially in chal­leng­ing cir­cum­stances”.

“This story of a pilot’s skill and ex­per­tise, and more im­por­tantly his calm­ness un­der pres­sure, met the cri­te­ria we were look­ing for to por­tray our ‘Best of Breed’ in­vest­ment phi­los­o­phy,” said Ncwana.

“Just as Cap­tain Sul­len­berger’s pas­sen­gers trusted his abil­ity to keep them safe, so our in­vestors trust us to look af­ter their funds and make the right de­ci­sions.”

The com­mer­cial was a col­lab­o­ra­tion be­tween Ned­group In­vest­ments, vis­ual mar­ket­ing com­mu­ni­ca­tions agency Brandlab, and Gi­ant Films, who pro­duced the broad­cast ad­vert. Be­sides broad­cast ad­ver­tis­ing, the cam­paign will also in­clude out­door and on­line ac­ti­va­tions as well as strate­gic so­cial me­dia ele­ments.

The ad was di­rected by Gi­ant Films’ Ian Gabriel, fol­low­ing a con­cept by Brandlab creative di­rec­tor Mark Fisher. The 45-sec­ond com­mer­cial was shot on lo­ca­tion in New York.

With a South African scale bud­get and sink­ing rand, this meant that, bar­ring aerial pho­tog­ra­phy, Gabriel had to shoot for one ex­tended day only, “which meant we needed to move the crew around at the some­what more hec­tic pace of a South African rather than a New York film shoot”.

Gi­ant used Amer­i­can crew to shoot the New York footage and got Sul­len­berger to speak about the in­ci­dent, which he still won’t clas­sify as hero­ism.

Af­ter that, the real work be­gan, with weeks of in­ten­sive spe­cial ef­fects and com­puter-gen­er­ated graph­ics to bring the amaz­ing event to life.

Gi­ant Films paid trib­ute to Marco Re­poso de Bar­bosa and the 3D team at South African post- pro­duc­tion house Black Ginger, be­cause they “ex­celled them­selves, help­ing Gi­ant to de­liver a world-class com­mer­cial in record time”.


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