The industry's best marketers were celebrated at the 23rd Marketer & Comms Team of the Year Awards held last night at the Lancaster London Hotel.

Lundbeck were the proud winners of the night's most prestigious award – taking Marketing Company of the Year 2016.

Uniquely amongst pharmaceutical marketing competitions, the finalists are not judged on past work, but are tasked with an 'on-the-day' role-play challenge based on current healthcare trends. They must demonstrate creativity, knowledge and strategic thinking to a judging panel comprised of senior marketing and healthcare leaders. 

On top of winning the top prize of the night for an excellent all-round performance across all categories, Lundbeck also won the award for Cross Functional Marketing Team.

Thomas Weldhen, currently Senior Analyst at Napp Pharmaceuticals, was the winner of Aspiring Marketer – a category for pharma professionals who are not currently in a marketing role but wish to make the move in the future to assess their competencies and skills against other would-be marketers in a protected environment.

New Marketer of the Year went to Ben Rostron of Celgene, whilst Brand/Product Manager was won by Kiran Garcha of Gilead Sciences. Senior Marketer of the Year went to Nikki St Paul of LEO Pharma.

Meanwhile, the Communications Team of the Year 2015 competition saw entrants ranging from small independent healthcare communications companies to global agencies. The International Challenge was won by Publicis Life Brands Resolute, and the NHS Challenge winner was Aurora Communications.

Gill Chalk, Head of Events at PharmaTimes, said: "We would like to thank all the participants and their colleagues for supporting them through the competition and at last night's celebration. We hope you enjoyed a good evening of celebration – recognising outstanding talent in the pharmaceutical industry. PharmaTimes looks forward to welcoming you all to the 2017 competition."

Recognised as the leading awards for pharmaceutical marketing professionals, the Marketer and Communications Team competitions are unique, competency-based programmes that invite individual and team finalists to compete in a real-life challenge devised and judged by senior marketing and healthcare leaders. The aim of the competition is not only to recognise and reward marketing excellence but also to provide professional development through extensive feedback, peer benchmarking and mentoring, as well as providing wider industry learnings on marketing skills and competencies.

"This year's theme was 'Customer Innovation'," adds Sabina Syed, managing director of Visions4Health and and co-chair of the Executive Steering Committee. "Our candidates were not only judged on the basics in marketing & communications but for evidence of pioneering thought processes, unexpected ways of using technology and data, and new attitudes towards marketing."

PharmaTimes would like to thank all the sponsors, supporters and the Executive Steering Committee for their ongoing commitment, time and the hard work everyone puts into to ensuring the competition is relevant to today's marketers working in challenging markets. Without their involvement there would be no competition.

We would like to extend our grateful thanks to all our sponsors:

  • QuintilesIMS – kind sponsors of the Marketer and Comms Teams Finals days,
  • Chase sponsored the Aspiring Marketer category and the tables at the gala,
  • Wilmington Healthcare sponsored the New Marketer and Senior Marketer categories and the gala brochure
  • Redbow Consulting Group sponsored the Cross-Functional Team category and developed and delivered Comms Team and Cross-Functional Team challenges
  • PI Partnership sponsors of the feedback and analysis reports

We would also like to thank Nick Rodger, Interactive Pharma Solutions – Nick has been involved with the competition for over 10 years, and acted in the capacity of chair for six years. Nick has helped to drive and develop the competition. Nick will step down as co-chair, and continue working with PharmaTimes on the Steering Group. We welcome Mark Lawson, International Commercial Lead, MundiPharma as co-chair of the steering group for 2017; he Joins Sabina Syed, Managing Director of Visions4Health as co-chair.

Full list of winners

Communications Team of the Year – NHS

Winner: Aurora Communications

Highly Commended: MHP Communications

Finalist: Hayward Medical Communications`

Communications Team of the Year – International

Winner: Publicis Life Brands Resolute

Commended: Real Science

Finalists: Looped; MHP Communications; Synergy Vision

Aspiring Marketer of the Year

Winner: Thomas Weldhe, Napp Pharmaceuticals

Commended: Melvin Hamlin, Celgene

FinalistsI: Yan Chen, Merck Serono; Godwin Ekoriko, Merck Serono

New Marketer of the Year

Winner: Ben Rostron, Celgene

Highly Commended: Andrew Masterson, Lundbeck

Brand/Product Manager of the Year

Winner: Kiran Garcha, Gilead Sciences

Highly Commended: Reena Rajdev, Takeda

Finalists: Olivia Caddice, Pax Vax; Zoe Chambers, Celgene

Senior Marketer of the Year

Winner: Nikki St Paul, LEO Pharma

Cross Functional Marketing Team

Winner: Lundbeck

Company of the Year

Winner: Lundbeck