Victoria's Secret head of stores departs amid staff job cuts
L Brands’ Victoria’s Secret is cutting staff and losing a top executive, as sales continue to fall at the struggling lingerie brand.
Victoria’s Secret cut about 50 people this week - some 15 percent of Victoria’s Secret’s employees - including senior leaders and junior staffers, at its Columbus, Ohio, headquarters, while the company’s head of stores and store operations is also stepping down, according to sources.
April Holt, who currently oversees the chain’s real estate, will leave the company imminently, while Becky Kritek-Behringer, currently senior vice president of store operations, will assume some of her responsibilities. Holt was with the company for 16 years. A successor is expected to be named.
This is not the first shake up to hit the company. Victoria’s Secret sales have been dropping at an alarming rate for the last couple of years, due to its brand image that no longer resonates with its female audience.
Last November, it lost its CEO Jan Singer, and quickly appointed former Tory Burch executive John Mehas to the role. Meanwhile, former L Brands chief marketing officer Ed Razek stepped down from his position in August.
In an attempt to turn its image around, the brand recently hired Valentina Sampaio as its first transgender model, as well as contracted its first-ever plus-size model, Ali Tate Cutler.
It has also been rethinking its annual fashion show, after criticism that the lingerie catwalk is sexist and out of touch with consumers.
Still, it has not been enough to keep parent company L Brands in the green. Despite a strong first quarter, L Brands second-quarter results fell short, as the Victoria’s Secret brand continued to drag down overall sales.
It reported net sales of $2.902 billion for the quarter ended Aug. 3, 2019, compared to sales of $2.984 billion reported in the same quarter last year.
Comparable sales for the second quarter were down 1 percent, with comparable sales dropping 6 percent at Victoria’s Secret.
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