Carat Raids OMD's Warren, Media Buying Vet Will Serve As Verklin's No. 2

In a blow to Omnicom's OMD unit, Carat has raided Ray Warren to become president of Carat USA, and president of Carat Media Group Americas. Warren, who had been managing director, as well as the chief media buying executive at OMD, moves to Carat after a nearly five-month search for a successor to Charlie Rutman, who left in February to join Havas' MPG USA as CEO.

Warren, a 25-year media veteran, was appointed by Carat Americas CEO David Verklin.

Aside from his experience on the buy side, Warren has also worked in sports television and in network sales. At OMD USA, he was charged with overseeing national and local television and radio buying, sports marketing, entertainment marketing, direct response, branded entertainment, and Hispanic marketing across the company. Before coming to OMD, Warren was president and CEO of Raycom Sports, a sports marketing company. He joined Raycom Sports as executive vice president for sales and marketing in 1988. He was tapped as chief operating officer in 1994, and became president and CEO in 1998, where he remained until 2002. Warren's career began in media buying at the former Ted Bates Advertising, before moving to BBDO and then to Benton & Bowles Advertising. He subsequently joined the ABC Television Network in sales, where he eventually was named vice president of Eastern Sales. "We have exciting plans in store for Carat in the months ahead, and Ray is just the inspirational leader that we need to get us there," said Verklin, adding that he wanted to increase the company's profile in the area of communications planning.

And as president of Carat Media Group Americas, he will oversee the operations of Carat USA, Carat Canada, and Carat Latin America, a representative said.

Representatives for OMD could not be reached for comment.

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