CreativeMornings: Ahmed Tilly on Ethics

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With CreativeMornings’ worldwide theme for February being Ethics, we thought it would be a great idea to invite an upstanding citizen of South Africa’s creative industry to be our speaker.

A man who considers his greatest achievement to be creating award-winning work without once doing a scam ad, Ahmed Tilly is the perfect fit.


Ahmed Tilly grew up in Polokwane, studied in Jozi, lived in Cape Town and considers Johannesburg as home. Tilly worked as a sales assistant, switchboard operator, PA announcer, supermarket cashier, confectionary and shoe salesman before entering the communications industry.

He started his career in advertising at Lindsay Smithers FCB in 1996, moved to Publicis for a couple of years before relocating to Cape Town to get into The Jupiter Drawing Room. He also did a stint with TBWA. In 2005, Tilly moved back to Johannesburg to start Black River FC.

Tilly has been elected as a member of the Creative Circle EXCO for several consecutive years, judged the Loeries Awards for close to a decade and judged the Cannes Lion Awards in 2015. He’s been nominated for the past 3 years as “Most Admired in Jozi” by his peers, which he thinks is pretty cool.

Thanks to the work he has had a hand in, he is unwelcomed in India, Zimbabwe, parts of South Africa and China. His creative philosophy; “If it’s not worth remarking about, it’s not worth doing”.

Ahmed’s CreativeMornings talk will take place on Friday, 26 February 2016. Tickets will be released on Monday, 22 February at 07:00 sharp. Register, set your alarm, and book your ticket when they are released for what promises to be a fantastic talk.

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