June 26, 2020 / 6:53 AM / 12 days ago

Card Factory CEO Hubbard exits after 4 years in role

A woman wearing a face mask looks at a smartphone as she walks past a shuttered branch of Card Factory in Hackney, following the outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), London, Britain, June 2, 2020. REUTERS/Simon Newman

(Reuters) - Card Factory (CARDC.L) said on Friday top boss Karen Hubbard would be stepping down at the end of June after being at the helm for four years, at a time when it expects high-street transactions to be hurt due to social distancing measures.

The British card retailer also said non-executive Chairman Paul Moody would take on an executive chair role until it names a new CEO.

“Karen and the board have agreed that this is an appropriate time to transition to new leadership committed to the longer-term successful implementation of the next phase of the group’s return to growth,” the British greeting card retailer said.

Shares of the company, which gained as much as 2.8% in early trade, changed course to shed 1.8% to 48.90 pence by 0719 GMT

The company, which has more than 1,000 stores in the UK and Ireland, earlier this month warned of a hit to its business from social distancing measures, although online sales had seen a surge during Britain’s coronavirus lockdown.

The Wakefield-based firm also scrapped its dividend payout this year as it grappled with lower footfall, online competition and higher costs of maintaining brick-and-mortar stores.

Reporting by Shanima A in Bengaluru; Editing by Anil D'Silva and Uttaresh.V

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