Victoria’s Secret and Bath & Body Works Have Officially Parted Ways

BankruptcyHQ Brief:

Multiple sources claim that Victoria’s Secret’s United Kingdom, subsidiary, which filed for bankruptcy last year, is now liquidating its brick and mortar operations. L Brands teamed up with Next last year, a struggling clothing store in the United Kingdom. Victoria’s Secret & Co. and Next did not respond to emails immediately. Teneo is a UK bankruptcy expert.

  • Except for Victoria’s Secret and L Brands, all traces of Les Wexner’s “Limited” conglomerate were washed away Tuesday when L Brands officially changed the name of Bath & Body Works to Bath & Body Works. They also began listing on the stock exchange under the ticker BBWI.
  • According to a press release from Bath & Body Works, Victoria’s Secret & Co. trades now as VSCO. It includes Victoria’s Secret Lingerie and Pink and Victoria’s Secret Beauty.

BankruptcyHQ Insight: Victoria’s Secret

Wexner’s empire may now be a distant memory. The two surviving brands of the company split, with Wexner as their leader.

The Limited was founded in Columbus, Ohio 60 years ago. Wexner’s marketing and merchandising expertise grew from a small shop to a large conglomerate of mostly clothing companies. 

Most of these companies were sold or shut down as the growth of the clothing industry slowed. Victoria’s Secret is the only exception, despite being gradually displaced by rivals in recent years. This is due to Victoria’s Secret’s reluctance and ability to adapt to changing society and consumer preferences.

This has led to a reckoning. It included a meaculpa from Martin Waters, CEO, at the company’s recent standalone investor conference. Also, a 180-degree shift in the company’s previous “glamazon” models and influencers.

Bath & Body Works, a company that sells personal care products and highly collectible candles, was one of the reasons for the split. Victoria’s Secret has, however, not been expanding.

Morgan Stanley analysts noted that investors were skeptical on the first day of trading for the lingerie brand. However, they believe it has a “credible recovery story” with low-single-digit sales growth over the long term. 

A client note dated August 3 stated that “our view is supported underlying industry trends, a global share gain opportunity and international expansion. 2020’s meaningful cost rationalization efforts, recent financial performance, and confidence in the new management.”

Victoria’s Secret, Bath & Body Works, and L Brands are not without their problems. L Brands and the Oregon Department of Justice reached an agreement. Both businesses were parties to the agreement as of Friday. 

The agreement pledges $90million in corporate money to (1) protect workers from harassment and discrimination and (2) hold leaders responsible for their wrongdoing. According to the press release, “Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum issued a joint statement Friday.

The release states that “the settlement is for the Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund” and other shareholders. They alleged that L Brands’ board failed to investigate the close personal relationships of former CEO and Chairman Emeritus Leslie Wexner with Jeffrey Epstein and ignored the widespread culture of sexual harassment at L Brands.”

 

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sycamore partners
victoria s secret stores
jc penney
neiman marcus
parent company l brands
plans to close
private equity firm
store closures
lingerie retailer
permanently close
department stores
secret uk
department store chain
plans to permanently
stuart burgdoerfer
250 stores
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