Authentic leaders talking openly about themselves and their journey so far

Karen Hubbard

Former Executive Director of Property & Format DevelopmentAsda Stores Ltd

Formerly on the President’s Global Council of Women Leaders, for Walmart and Executive Director of Property & Format Development, Asda Stores Ltd, Karen is married with two teenage daughters. She openly credits her husband John as the biggest supporter in her career development and discusses their shared openness to learning.
Karen talks openly about one her proudest moments during her post – the Netto conversion, for which she credits her formidable team behind the vision and ambition of the project as much as herself. Team effort has played a major part in her goal to succeed in business and the role of diversity in creating a great team; not just gender and ethnicity, but also the diversity of thought and the “melting pot” of people’s background.

Official Biography

Karen Hubbard is Asda’s Former Executive Director Property and Format Development, responsible for Property, Construction and Format Development. She was appointed to the role in August 2011 after successfully rolling out the transformation of over 140 Netto stores into Asda supermarkets – the largest store conversion project in Asda’s history.
Karen joined Asda 2009 as Operations Director for Supermarkets, responsible for the development and operation of a format for small supermarkets. Leading a relatively small team she was tasked with developing a compelling customer offer and operating model for smaller stores between 5,000 and 25,000 square feet. Following some successful trials, in May 2010 Asda acquired 147 Netto stores and began the process of transforming them into Asda Supermarkets. Under Karen’s leadership the Supermarkets team successfully rolled out a small store format for Asda that allowed customers to carry out a full weekly shop in a small store, accessing over 10,000 products – all at the same price as a large Asda superstore. The six month conversion programme is one of the quickest in retail history and at its peak has seen 8 Asda supermarkets being opened each week.
Prior to joining Asda Karen was at BP Oil for 18 years. During this time Karen worked in a number of different markets and in a wide variety of retail roles including Operations Director. Her last role at BP before joining Asda was Convenience Retail Director UK, responsible for BP’s forecourt retailing formats including ‘Connect’ convenience stores and the BP/M&S partnership stores.
Karen has an MBA, gained at the Australian Graduate School of Management and is married with two daughters. She enjoys a range of family focussed activities as well as horse-riding, and outdoor pursuits. She is a keen walker and skier.