Carat USA Merges With Its I-shop Fusion

Two Digital Execs to Lead 'New Agency Model'

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NEW YORK (AdAge.com) -- Full-service marketing shop Carat will now be led by two digital executives.
Sarah Fay is CEO of the new Carat.
Sarah Fay is CEO of the new Carat.

Demonstrating that it's betting on digital as the future of its agency, Carat USA has merged with Carat Fusion, its interactive shop, and appointed the top two Fusion execs as CEO and presisdent of the full-service agency.

Sarah Fay, Scott Sorokin
Sarah Fay will assumed the CEO role at what will now be called Carat, reporting to Carat Americas CEO David Verklin. Previously, she was president of Isobar US, Carat parent Aegis's network of digital shops. She founded Carat Interactive in 2001.

Scott Sorokin, formerly president at Carat Fusion, is now president of the new Carat.

As part of the move, Ray Warren is leaving the president's post at Carat. Mr. Warren, a veteran of the TV media-buying and sports-marketing space, will move on to "pursue his passion for content marketing," according to a statement by Mr. Verklin.

Major shift
The moves indicate the major shift in the importance of digital marketing within the industry -- and a reversal of a longtime complaint that digital was left sitting at the children's table. But as marketers begin to ramp up interactive spending from low to mid-single digits into 15% or 20% of budgets, traditional agencies are beginning to realize they don't want that expertise living elsewhere.

Additionally, digital capabilities are creeping into offline media, making knowledge of interactive technologies a necessity for an ever larger group of agency execs. Carat, in fact, has predicted that by 2010 more than two-thirds of all media will be accessed via digital technologies.
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