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Leadership

Matt Simister CEO, Central Europe

Matt joined Tesco in 1996 in UK Marketing. He has worked in, or with, the CE businesses since 2005, including as Commercial Director for Czech and Slovakia, and the Group Food Commercial Director, leading Food sourcing, buying and supply chain.  After returning to lead the turnaround of the food business in the UK in 2005, Matt was promoted to CEO for Central Europe in April 2017 and is responsible for all of Tesco´s business in the Czech Republic, Hungary, Slovakia and Poland. At the same time he joined the Tesco Executive Committee.

Hugh Garavelli Central Europe Property Director

Hugh is responsible for Property in Central Europe. He joined Tesco in 1989 as a Retail Planning Manager in Store Planning Department. Since then he has held a number of roles in Property, both in the UK and other countries. Prior to joining Tesco, he worked for the General Merchandise retailer: Woolworths. In September 2017 Hugh was appointed to his current role of Property Director for Central Europe. He is married to Fran, and has two children: Clara and William

Ela Golab People Director for Central Europe

Ela's job is to look after colleagues in Tesco in Central Europe. Her main responsibility is to help the company fulfill its business strategy, mainly thanks to talented colleagues and their skills. Part of her work is to create a corporate culture where colleagues have the opportunity to realize themselves and make Tesco a great place to work.

Ela joined Tesco in 2006 as a Head of Communication in Poland, where she was responsible for internal and external communication and led the first plan to support communities in Poland. After two years, she moved to the People Department as Training and Development Manager, where she launched, among other initiatives, an extensive management development program “Strong leadership – Better results”. In 2010 she was promoted to the position of Personnel Director in Poland to support the creation of a great place to work.

When one leadership management board for Central Europe was created she took over the role of People Director for Retail. Since June 2018 she has held her current position as People Director for Central Europe.

Before joining Tesco, she worked in a variety of roles, including a role in the radio station start-up, that became nationwide broadcaster or was Marketing Director in Television . She also held a corporate leadership position at Philip Morris, where she led CSR programs for youth smoking prevention.

Ian Hutchins Central Europe Communications Director and Group Corporate Responsibility Director

Ian leads our communications teams in Central Europe and leads our Little Helps Plan corporate responsibility programme across the Tesco Group. In Europe he is responsible for our colleague communications, media, government affairs and corporate responsibility work. Ian joined Tesco in 1998  on the Tesco graduate programme and has spent most of his time at Tesco within the Group Communications team including roles in the media team, colleague communications, corporate responsibility and government affairs. He has also worked on several high profile corporate communications projects throughout his time with Tesco. Ian is a fluent Polish speaker and an enthusiastic student of the history and politics of Central Europe. Before joining Tesco he worked for Shell, including a period based in Poland.

Jiří Černý Central Europe Legal Director

Jiří is a Director of the Legal Department for Central Europe and a member of the Exec Team for Central Europe.

Jiří joins us from Microsoft, where he was responsible for managing legal and corporate affairs in the Czech Republic and Slovakia. Before joining Microsoft, Jiří spent time in both a regional law firm and working as an in house lawyer for British Telecommunications where he was responsible for legal affairs across Central Europe.

Jiří is responsible for ensuring that legal teams across Central Europe are good business partners for the rest of the company, contributing to the business plan while effectively protecting the entire company, colleagues and ensuring that Tesco customers are at the heart of everything the company does. By providing legal advice, implementing corporate policies and ethical standards, Jiří and his team actively support and oversee compliance and business integrity.

Matthew Kay Customer Director for Central Europe.

Matt is responsible for Marketing, Tesco Mobile and Tesco Financial Services.

He joined Tesco in 2003 and began his career on Tesco´s graduate program. He has been responsible for a number of marketing communications, strategy and proposition roles over the past 15 years. Prior to taking up his current position, he served as Tesco's Group Brand Manager and launched a range of our own brand Exclusively at Tesco, tailored to customer needs. He also held the position of Marketing Director for Jack's new format business in the UK. In February 2019, Matt was appointed to his current role of Customer Director for Central Europe.

Scott Fitzgerald Financial Director for Central Europe
Jiří Maňas Technology Director for Central Europe

Jiří joined the position of Technology Director for Central Europe in July 2019 when he became a member of the Tesco Central Europe Exec Team. He came to Tesco from Home Credit in Vietnam, where he served as Director of Information Technology and Technology Director for the past three years. He has extensive experience in banking, finance and IT. He is a holder of the ASEAN CIO 2017 award. Jiří studied Cybernetics and Artificial Intelligence at the Czech Technical University in Prague. He is married, has three sons and likes to play football in his free time. In his life he follows the motto: "Living in fear means living only half."

Martin Kuruc CEO for Tesco in Slovakia

Martin started his career in Tesco as a manager of foodstuffs at hypermarket in Petržalka in 2000. It was a really interesting experience for him - to be part of the team that opened the first Tesco hypermarket in the capital of Slovakia Bratislava. Martin has been working in Tesco since its entry into the Slovak market. He later opened the Tesco store in Piešťany and led several teams in both small and large format stores, in the central office where he led the Supply Chain and Distribution teams, as well as the operations support team in Slovakia and the Czech Republic as operations director.

Since June 2018, Martin has been managing director and since May 2021 is Martin CEO of Tesco in Slovakia. Martin is responsible for implementing the company's strategy towards customers, colleagues and communities. As he puts it, it is a very responsible and exciting task that often fills him with pride in what individual teams in stores, distribution centers and central offices do every day to give customers a better shopping experience and colleagues a great place for work.

Zsolt Pálinkás CEO of Tesco in Hungary

Zsolt joined Tesco in 2003. He started as a store Department Leader and continued his carrier in various operations roles until 2006. Then he became marketing project manager in the marketing department  and led one of our key project in the Hungarian capital city. After a year in marketing he moved to Commercial department, where he started as a buyer and worked his way up to Director for Fresh Food and General Merchandise. In March 2019 he was promoted to Chief Operating Officer for Central Europe and from May 2021 he is CEO of Tesco in Hungary.

Katarína Navrátilová CEO for Tesco in Czech Republic

Katarína joined Tesco in 2000 as Buying Coordinator for Slovak market. Since then, she has gone through several positions, which allowed her to learn about the different parts of the business. After several positions in the commercial department, she moved to Turkey, where she took over the role of Sales Director at Tesco - Kipa and at the same time she became a member of the Board of Directors. After returning home, she became People Director for Central Europe as well as a member of the Executive team. Currently, she is CEO of Tesco in Czech Republic.