Victoria’s Secret sold amid declining sales

Victoria’s Secret, plagued by declining sales and awkward questions about its billionaire founder who has run the business for five decades, is being sold. Company owner L Brands has said private equity firm Sycamore Brands will buy 55% of Victoria’s Secret for around $ 525 million. The Columbus, Ohio-based company will keep the remaining 45%. L Brands shares fell 12% in pre-market trading on Thursday. The selling price means a sharp drop for a brand with hundreds of stores that recorded around $ 7 billion in revenue last year. in its stores are in decline as competition intensifies and tastes change. Victoria’s Secret suffered a 12% drop in same-store sales over the past holiday season. L Brands said Thursday that same-store sales fell 10% at Victoria’s Secret in the fourth quarter. In its heyday, the underwear and lingerie brand was known for its catalog filled with models and a glitzy annual TV show that mixed fashion, models and music. . Amid its struggles, Victoria’s Secret sales continued to erode, the show was taken off network television, and its stock – which traded close to $ 100 in 2015 – is now trading at around $ 24. (Video: Victoria’s Secret cancels fashion show as sales plummet) L Brands has also come under close scrutiny because its CEO Les Wexner has ties to late financier Jeffrey Epstein, who was charged with sex trafficking. Epstein began managing Wexner’s money in the late 1980s and helped straighten the finances of a Wexner-backed real estate development in an affluent suburb of Columbus. Wexner has said he severed ties with Epstein completely nearly 12 years ago and accused him of embezzling “vast sums” of his fortune. Wexner apologized during L Brands’ annual Investor Day opening address in Columbus last fall, saying he was “embarrassed” by his former ties to Epstein. Wexner will step down once the transaction is complete and become President Emeritus. Wexner is the longest-serving CEO of an S&P 500 company. He founded what would become L Brands in 1963 with retail store The Limited, according to the company’s website. Wexner owns about 16.71% of L Brands, according to FactSet. Sycamore has approximately $ 10 billion in assets under management. The company’s investment portfolio includes retailers such as Belk, Coldwater Creek, Hot Topic and Talbots.

Victoria’s Secret, plagued by declining sales and awkward questions about its billionaire founder who has run the business for five decades, is being sold.

Company owner L Brands has said private equity firm Sycamore Brands will buy 55% of Victoria’s Secret for around $ 525 million. The Columbus, Ohio company will keep the remaining 45%.

L Brands shares slipped 12% in pre-market on Thursday.

The selling price means a sharp drop for a brand with hundreds of stores that recorded around $ 7 billion in revenue last year.

The sales of its stores are down as competition intensifies and tastes change. Victoria’s Secret suffered a 12% drop in same-store sales over the past holiday season. L Brands said Thursday that same-store sales fell 10% at Victoria’s Secret in the fourth quarter.

In its heyday, the underwear and lingerie brand was known for its catalog filled with models and a glitzy annual TV show blending fashion, models and music. Amid its struggles, Victoria’s Secret sales continued to erode, the show was taken off network television, and its stock – which traded close to $ 100 in 2015 – is now trading at around $ 24.

(Video: Victoria’s Secret cancels fashion show as sales plummet)

L Brands has also come under scrutiny because its CEO Les Wexner has ties to late financier Jeffrey Epstein, who has been charged with sex trafficking.

Epstein began managing Wexner’s money in the late 1980s and helped straighten the finances of a Wexner-backed real estate development in an affluent suburb of Columbus. Wexner said he severed ties with Epstein completely nearly 12 years ago and accused him of embezzling “vast sums” of his fortune.

Wexner apologized during L Brands’ annual Investor Day opening address in Columbus last fall, saying he was “embarrassed” by his former ties to Epstein.

Wexner will step down upon completion of the transaction and become Chairman Emeritus.

Wexner is the longest-serving CEO of an S&P 500 company. He founded what would become L Brands in 1963 with retail store The Limited, according to the company’s website. Wexner owns about 16.71% of L Brands, according to FactSet.

Sycamore has approximately $ 10 billion in assets under management. The company’s investment portfolio includes retailers such as Belk, Coldwater Creek, Hot Topic and Talbots.


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