Billionaire owner of Victoria’s Secret set to sell up as controversial lingerie brand struggles in the MeToo era
The billionaire owner of Victoria’s Secret is set to sell the controversial brand and step aside from his retail empire.
Leslie Wexner, 82, has been chief executive of the lingerie giant’s parent company L Brands for 57 years.
But Victoria’s Secret has struggled in the era of #MeToo amid claims its marketing is over-sexualised.
Out of touch: Victoria’s Secret models at a New York Fashion show. The lingerie-maker has struggled in the era of #MeToo amid claims its marketing is over-sexualised
It has also faced competition from the likes of Savage X Fenty, owned by pop star Rihanna.
Like-for-like sales at Victoria’s Secret fell 12 per cent in the nine weeks to January 4, while group sales fell 3 per cent.
The brand has also been accused of being out of date for using scantily-clad models to market itself.
It cancelled its annual fashion show last year amid declining ratings and a huge public backlash.
The show once drew in millions of viewers each year and was projected on to screens in New York’s Times Square, but it was increasingly branded sexist.
Wexner could stand down as chief executive but may stay as chairman.
Shares jumped 12 per cent to $23.10, boosting the value of the tycoon’s 17 per cent holding by £90million to £840million.