Tokyo, September 10, 2020 – An innovative campaign that pairs the unlikely combination of sport and wildlife protection has won Dentsu Public Relations Inc. top prize in three separate categories at the 2020 Golden World Awards for Excellence (GWA), organized by IPRA, the International Public Relations Association.

In this year’s awards, the SAVE LIONS Project undertaken by Dentsu Public Relations Inc. and Dentsu Inc. (Dentsu) for Japanese professional baseball club Seibu Lions was ranked the best worldwide in the categories of Sports (Agency), Corporate Communications (Agency), and Corporate Responsibility (Agency). The impressive wins mark the sixth successive year in which Dentsu Public Relations campaigns have been placed first in one or more categories and continue a long history of IPRA GWA successes since 1991 that includes numerous awards and two overall Grands Prix prizes.

Commenting on the triple wins at this year’s awards, Masahiro Makiguchi, president and CEO of Dentsu Public Relations Inc., remarked, “We are delighted that our campaign was voted the best in so many fields and we’re proud that in a fun way, it helped spark serious conversations about endangered animal species.”

Begun in 1990, the Golden World Awards honor the most successful public relations campaigns executed globally and provide a reference point for encouraging and inspiring PR practitioners everywhere to creatively meet their clients’ needs. 

This year’s Golden World Awards competition, the thirty-first IPRA has staged, brought together a panel of 42 industry experts to identify the most original and inventive PR campaigns worldwide in 80 categories, and to select winners of the overall Grand Prix and Global Contribution Award.


SAVE LIONS Project by Seibu Lions
Client: Seibu Lions
Agencies: Dentsu, Dentsu Public Relations Inc.
Categories: Sports (Agency), Corporate Communications (Agency),
Corporate Responsibility (Agency)

Lions are still the kings of the African jungle, but they are a species at risk, with a wild population that has fallen by 80% over the past century. To meet this threat to its beloved team mascot, professional baseball team the Seibu Lions launched a project for their 70th anniversary season which channeled fans’ love of baseball into wildlife conservation efforts. The initiative began by cleverly restyling the team as the “Save Lions” (playing on the identical pronunciation of “save” and “Seibu” in Japanese), a hook that proved irresistible to fans and media alike. During the season, each time a player hit a home run the Seibu Lions donated money to the lion conservation activities of Oxford University’s prestigious Wildlife Conservation Research Unit. The team also reached out globally to secure additional project members, with more than ten companies and organizations joining the Save Lions conservation league in its first year – including several other sports teams also named after lions.

About the Golden World Awards
The annual Golden World Awards for Excellence, established in 1990 by the International Public Relations Association, recognize excellence in public relations practice worldwide. Prizes are awarded in 80 categories, including segments such as Healthcare and Public Sector, disciplines such as Public Affairs and Crisis Management, as well as Community Engagement, International Campaigns, and Internal Communications, with separate subcategories for PR agency-led campaigns and projects conducted by in-house PR departments. There is also a special Global Contribution Award to recognize campaigns conducted in pursuit of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals. From these winners, the campaign judged to have set the year’s highest standards is selected for the overall IPRA Grand Prix for Excellence, announced each autumn at the IPRA Golden World Awards Gala.  

About Dentsu Public Relations Inc.
Since its founding in 1961, Dentsu Public Relations Inc. has served as strategic partner to a diverse range of companies, governmental bodies and other organizations. Some 290 employees provide clients with comprehensive reputation management solutions, creating new value and building advocacy through approaches including data analysis, insight-driven content design, and targeted information delivery. Dentsu Public Relations Inc. was recognized by the Holmes Report as Japan Consultancy of the Year in both 2009 and 2015, and as North Asia PR Consultancy of the Year in 2018.