The Barbarian Group has hired Chuck Fletcher as its new chief technology officer.
The Razorfish veteran’s appointment also marks the second time in recent months that the Cheil Worldwide network has hired a Publicis Groupe digital veteran for an executive position. Cathy Butler became CEO earlier this year after serving as DigitasLBi’s EVP and group director of North American digital products.
The release states that Fletcher and Butler intend to preserve the group’s spirit, which co-founder and former chairman Benjamin Palmer described as “make some rad shit” when announcing his exit last year.
“I’m excited to help Barbarian continue to strengthen its creative coding legacy,” Fletcher’s statement read. “I’ve always been a huge admirer of the agency’s technology teams that created the Cinder platform, and their phenomenal work with AR, large touch-screen experiences and the original iTunes visualizer. I’m humbled and honored to be a part of what’s next at Barbarian.”
Note that his quote touches on specific projects spanning Barbarian’s recent history. Like many of those involved in the group, Fletcher has also long specialized in emerging technologies. He ran the tech side of Razorfish’s Emerging Experiences group in New York, and in describing that role on LinkedIn he wrote, “I’m lucky that in any given week I get to work with Robots, Hololens, VR, IOT and lots of other random technologies.”
Fletcher’s most prominent previous agency job was a stint at Havas where he served as CTO and managing director of innovation at the New York office, launching and running the R&D unit MadSci Labs. He also worked at Wunderman and Grey Interactive in addition to serving as director of interactive technology at Sesame Workshop, the Sesame Street company.
Robert Christ most recently filled the CTO role before leaving the agency last summer amid a general exodus of Barbarian Group’s founders and principals. Earlier this month, Barbarian’s sister agency McKinney hired Joe Maglio of Havas as its New York CEO after moving into the former agency’s offices in a move to further consolidate parent company Cheil’s U.S. networks.