Holland & Barrett appoints new managing director as it focuses on digital transformation strategy

Holland and Barrett

Holland & Barrett [IRDX RHOL] has appointed Steve Carson to the newly-created position of managing director as it focuses on digital transformation strategy.

Carson was previously director of retail and customer operation at Sainsbury’s Argos where he was responsible for 840 stores with 30,000 staff and a turnover of £4.5bn.

Before Sainsbury’s Argos, he held senior roles at Argos [IRDX RARG], Homebase [IRDX RHMB] and Sainsbury’s [IRDX RSBR]. He successfully introduced Argos concessions into other Home Retail Group stores and led Argos’ successful digital transformation strategy, turning the business into a highly-regarded ‘digital first’ company prior to its sale to Sainsbury’s.

As retail director at Argos, he created its award-winning digital store concept, created and developed its innovative eBay partnership and managed the rollout of its Hub and Spoke delivery network. In his new role, he will oversee the day-to-day running of Holland & Barrett and report the results directly to the chief executive officer Peter Aldis.

Peter Aldis, chief executive of Holland & Barrett, a Leading retailer in IRUK Top500 research, said that this appointment represented an important and strategic milestone for the business, as the retailer aims to drive digital transformation both online and through its brick-and-mortar stores.

“Coming so soon after our acquisition by L1 Retail, it is a clear signal of our intent to become one of the world’s leading health and wellness brands,” said Aldis.

“Steve brings with him considerable breadth and depth of senior-level experience in driving transformation at Sainsbury’s Argos. He will focus on our digital transformation programme and will help us continue to innovate in stores, ecommerce, logistics and supply chain as well as in customer service and fulfilment, creating the right platform for long-term sustainable digital growth.

“Steve’s appointment significantly strengthens our senior leadership team and provides greater capabilities for us to deliver a wide range of the UK and international growth projects without losing focus on the short-term challenges that define modern retailing.”

Carson said: “I’m excited at the fresh challenge ahead. Holland & Barrett is a long-standing and admired brand with enormous potential and a clear health and wellbeing proposition that is growing in popularity and relevance around the world. I know the Board is committed to innovation, from the supply chain through to customer service, and together with the team I look forward to helping them realise our growth and development ambitions in the coming years.”

Read more: our interview with Holland & Barrett ecomerce director Emma Mead features in a previous issue of the IRUK Top500 Strategy & Innovation Performance Dimension Report





Mentioned in this piece…

Holland & Barrett

Holland & Barrett


Holland & Barrett is a UK-based retailer of vitamins, minerals and herbal supplements. (more…)




Argos is a large multichannel home and general merchandise retailer. It is a pioneer in multichannel retail, having successfully pivoted its legacy operations into the eCommerce age. (more…)




Homebase is a British home improvement store and garden centre, with 342 stores across the United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland, serving around 60 million transactions a year, and a growing internet offering. (more…)




Sainsbury’s is a British supermarket chain with a significant share of the UK market. (more…)

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