Global Huge CEO Pete Stein Is Departing the Agency

He's joining Merkle to lead experience and commerce

Pete Stein replaced Michael Koziol as CEO of Huge last year. Pete Stein

After roughly a year on the job, Pete Stein is leaving digital agency Huge. Stein will take on a role leading experience and commerce at Merkle, the data-driven customer experience management company acquired by Dentsu Aegis Network in 2016.

Huge’s chief operating officer, Raj Singhal, will take on Stein’s day-to-day responsibilities while continuing in his current role, according to an internal memo seen by Adweek, written by Stein and Singhal and sent to employees today. Singhal will report to IPG CCO Philippe Krakowsky.

“While today’s news is sad, Pete’s decision comes at a time of momentum and institutional strength. In particular, we are proud to say that the leadership team, at both the global and office levels, continues to strengthen,” it reads, also noting the agency’s relationships with clients including AIG, Brooks, Citrix and P&G.

In his new role as global lead, experience and commerce at Merkle, Stein will be responsible for developing, growing and leading Merkle’s global experience and commerce capabilities.

“Pete is a recognized industry heavyweight who has experience leading enterprise transformation and delivering substantial new business growth,” Merkle CEO Craig Dempster said in a statement. “Pete embodies the key qualities we envisioned for this role, including a strong and experienced leader with strategic vision and deep operational ability. We are excited to have Pete on our team, building out this key part of our business.”

Stein joined Huge in May 2019 after serving as general manager of Fullscreen, a social content company. Prior to Fullscreen, he served as CEO of Publicis’ Razorfish.

Huge, which has 13 offices around the world, underwent a number of leadership changes under Stein. This summer, it hired Judith Hoogenboom to serve as global chief strategy officer. In December, Fura Johannesdottir joined as chief design officer. She replaced Derek Fridman, who left for Work & Co earlier last year.

Recent wins for the IPG-owned agency include Accuweather, Pantone and Eargo, a hearing aid brand.

@ErikDOster Erik Oster is an agencies reporter for Adweek.
@Minda_Smiley Minda Smiley is an agencies reporter at Adweek.