Things aren’t getting any better at Victoria’s Secret — and now chief executive officer Jan Singer is out.
A source close to the company confirmed Wednesday that Singer had resigned.
Singer, who previously served as ceo of intimates and shapewear company Spanx and as corporate vice president of global apparel at Nike Inc., left her post after only two years. She was hired to help revive the core lingerie business, replacing former ceo Sharen Jester Turney, who served in the role for 10 years.
The move “could be one more initiative aimed at a much-needed strategy shift at [L Brands] and their beleaguered [Victoria’s Secret] concept,” said Ike Boruchow, an analyst at Wells Fargo, in a research note.
Victoria’s Secret, a division of L Brands Inc., is still the market leader in intimates, but has been wrestling with strategy shifts and declining sales for some time. Online sales at Victoria’s Secret were flat in October, while in-store sales fell 7 percent. L Brands’ stock is also down more than 40 percent for the year and all of the firm’s growth lately has come from its Bath & Body Works business.
During her tenure at Victoria’s Secret, Singer focused on moving away from the unattainable airbrushed image and building bras that balanced functionality with fashion. Just before she arrived, the brand discontinued its swimwear and catalogue businesses.
“We all love competition. It makes us stronger,” Singer said during a 2017 conference call. “What I love about our business is…we are able to offer choices for [the customer]. Being fitted for a bra is a unique experience…there’s nothing that can replace that engagement with a customer.”
There’s no word yet who the new ceo will be and L Brands Inc., which is set to release third-quarter earnings on Nov. 19, would not comment.
Some analysts have speculated that the company will bring back its lucrative swimwear business in an attempt to drive sales. The company also said this year it would close its Henri Bendel business and is exploring options for La Senza.
The stock fell modestly and was down just 4 cents to $36.82 after word of Singer’s departure was first reported by the Wall Street Journal.