The CEO of Victoria’s Secret Lingerie division Jan Singer has resigned as the brand struggles to grow sales with younger shoppers turning to more inclusive bra and underwear retailers.
According to W. Magazine:
The brand’s CEO Jan Singer has reportedly resigned after two years in the top spot, the news comes less than a week after the taping of the brand’s annual televised fashion show spectacular, though this year the show will air under a cloud of controversy. In the lead up to the taping the brand’s senior creative director Ed Razek, the architect of the fashion show whose stint at VS started decades before Singer’s, gave a blunt interview to Vogue in which he he said that plus-size and transgender models don’t mesh with the “fantasy” the show is supposed to represent. Razek later apologized and walked those statements back, claiming that trans and curve models had been invited to audition before but hadn’t made the cut.
L Brand’s stock is down 39 percent in total this year (VS is by far the company’s biggest brand, though the company also owns Bath & Body Works and the recently shuttered Henri Bendel). In another telling measure, last year’s ratings for the fashion show sunk 30 percent amongst viewers 18 to 45 from the year before, continuing a recent trend of fledgling ratings.
The rise of competitors that emphasize either comfort, inclusivity, or both, like American Eagle’s Aerie and Rihanna’s Savage x Fenty, has been in part blamed for Victoria’s Secret’s slump. Though, other business factors like the ending of the brand’s iconic catalog and a decision to cease production of swimwear and other clothing may also be part of the problem. Online, many loyal consumers have also complained about what they perceive as a drop-off in quality amongst the brand’s products as well.