Cheil Worldwide Acquires The Barbarian Group


    
    Deal Brings Groundbreaking Creative Talent, Robust Digital Marketing
    Capabilities




    
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<p>NEW YORK, <chron>Dec. 2</chron> /CNW/ -- Cheil Worldwide, today announced it has purchased a majority stake in The Barbarian Group, the highly acclaimed award winning digital creative and marketing company. Barbarian moves its headquarters from <location>Boston</location> to its New York office effective today.</p>
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<p>Nack Hoi Kim, Worldwide CEO of South Korea-based Cheil, which operates 31 offices in 25 countries said, "We are thrilled to bring The Barbarian Group into our family. We're committed to our goal of being among the world's top 10 agencies by 2012, and this transaction brings us one step closer to realizing it."</p>
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<p>The acquisition of The Barbarian Group, known for creating such cutting-edge digital experiences as The Subservient Chicken and this month's augmented reality issue of Esquire magazine, is part of Cheil Worldwide's long-term growth plans. By joining one of the world's foremost digital creative powerhouses with Cheil's well-established global network, Cheil is poised to expand its digital creative offerings in the US and beyond.</p>
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<p>Barbarian Group's current management team - cofounders <person>Benjamin Palmer</person>, CEO; <person>Rick Webb</person>, Chief Operating Officer; and <person>Keith Butters</person>, Chief Experience Officer - will continue to lead the company. The Barbarian Group will enhance its offerings in R&D, planning and strategy and will obtain the ability to scale globally.</p>
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<p><person>Benjamin Palmer</person>, CEO of The Barbarian Group, said, "We chose this partnership with Cheil because they have a successful  global organization that is different from the existing holding companies - they've managed to globalize without falling into the business model of the other holding companies. The Barbarian Group has always been about fighting the battles of the future, not the battles of the past, and Cheil is well positioned to reinvent the future without stressing about protecting the past."</p>
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<p>The Barbarian Group was founded in 2001 in Palmer's apartment with a borrowed <money>$500</money> and a dream to reinvent the way agencies worked with production companies to create effective digital marketing. They mastered that dream by 2004, culminating in their work for Burger King.  From there, the company expanded beyond production roots, indeed, beyond "digital advertising" as the agency world views it. Today, the company has three offices, and provides a full range of digital marketing, planning, technology and strategy not just to brands such as Kashi and Red Bull, but to technology companies, publishers and entertainment properties. Their recent work with CNN Shirts and their work with several start ups illustrates this diverse  client base. As a result, The Barbarian Group is now one of the most respected digital marketing companies.</p>
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<p><person>Michael Kim</person>, President of Cheil <location>North America</location>, notes, "The Barbarian Group leads the industry in creativity and innovation. By adding their expertise and talent to our already strong foundation in <location>North America</location>, we are well-positioned to grow here. Bringing The Barbarian Group into Cheil <location>North America</location> is the latest in a string of moves throughout the past 12 months aimed at elevating our company to the next level of growth. "</p>
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<p>The news comes on the heels of Cheil Worldwide's successful acquisition in <chron>December 2008</chron> of top creative shop Beattie McGuinness Bungay (BMB). The London-based agency, ranked No. 1 in the UK based on new business rankings and recently expanded into the US market with its first global office in New York.</p>
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<p>AdMedia Partners acted as the exclusive financial advisor to Cheil in this transaction. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.</p>
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<p>  Contact: Cheil Worldwide Sam DiGennaro DiGennaro Communications (212) 966-9525 <a href="mailto:sam@digennaroNY.com">sam@digennaroNY.com</a></p>
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    ABOUT THE BARBARIAN GROUP:
    
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<p>The Barbarian Group is an award-wining digital marketing service and development company.  They partner with the best brands, technology companies and content creators to help navigate the treacherous waters where advertising, user experience, technology and marketing merge to create some of the most successful work on the web.</p>
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    ABOUT CHEIL WORLDWIDE:
    
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<p>Cheil Worldwide Inc., is Korea's  largest marketing agency and the 16th largest advertising agency in the world, as ranked by Advertising Age. Established in 1973 with headquarters in <location>Seoul</location>, Korea, Cheil has 29 offices in 25 countries with over 1,500 employees. Cheil offers a full portfolio of marketing communications services including advertising, digital, PR, sports marketing, exhibition and display production, and production of large-scale performance events.  Cheil Worldwide provides marketing and advertising services to Samsung Group and its affiliates, such as Samsung Electronics, Samsung Construction, Samsung Fire and Samsung Life. Other clients include Hankook Tires, Korea Tourism Organization and a roster of local Korean clients such as, KT, Naver, Shinhan Financial Group, Woongjin, KORAIL and more (full list available upon request). Cheil Worldwide's vision is to be ranked within the Top 10 advertising agencies worldwide by 2012.</p>
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    ABOUT CHEIL USA:
    
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<p>Established in 1992, Cheil USA is the North American Regional Headquarters of Cheil Worldwide - the 16th largest advertising agency in the world and headquartered in <location>Seoul</location>, <location>South Korea</location>. Based in Ridgefield Park, New Jersey, Cheil USA has locations in <location>Dallas</location>, Texas; <location>Toronto</location>, <location>Canada</location>; and <location>Mexico City</location>, <location>Mexico</location>. Through Passion for Ideas and Idea Engineering, Cheil USA is a full- service communications agency specializing in advertising, interactive, promotions, media, and event marketing.</p>
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For further information: For further information: Cheil Worldwide: Sam DiGennaro, DiGennaro Communications, +1-212-966-9525, sam@digennaroNY.com; The Barbarian Group: Eva McCloskey, Corporate Communications, +1-212-343-2165, eva@barbariangroup.com

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