Thursday, November 15, 2018

Victoria's Secret Chief Executive Jan Singer to Step Down

I guess Victoria's Secret is having problems, big problems.

At Quartz, "Victoria’s Secret’s CEO exits in the latest blow to the once-dominant lingerie brand":

The CEO of the lingerie giant Victoria’s Secret, Jan Singer, will leave her role at the company, owned by L Brands, after only two years, Bloomberg reports—the latest blow to a brand that has fallen far from the days when it held a near-monopoly on the bra market (pdf).

Singer, the former head of Spanx, was responsible for VS’s $4 billion lingerie business, which has taken a massive downturn in the past several years. And her departure—just a week after VS’s annual extravaganza of a fashion show got withering reviews—is only the latest sign of the company’s decline.

Most recently, a tone-deaf interview with the architects of the annual ogle-fest in Vogue last week served to showcase just how out of touch the brand has become. Edward Razek, chief marketing officer of L Brands, was roundly criticized on social media for his comments, many of which were defensive explanations for the show’s lack of diversity. Razek’s remarks about casting transgender models (referring to them as “transsexuals,” an antiquated phrase regarded as a slur) was especially crude:

“Shouldn’t you have transsexuals in the show? No. No, I don’t think we should,” Razek is quoted as saying. “Well, why not? Because the show is a fantasy. It’s a 42-minute entertainment special. That’s what it is.”

Razek later issued a meek apology via Victoria’s Secret Twitter account. But his message was clear: Transgender models—alongside any woman who doesn’t fit the brand’s narrow definition of bombshell beauty—does not belong in the “fantasy” that he and the show’s co-curator, VS executive Monica Mitro, want the brand to represent.

In his suggestion that the brand’s sex-kittenish aesthetic is working, the marketing chief seems to be indulging in his own fantasy, and missing a crucial fact: Victoria’s Secret is failing. As new, body-positive women’s underwear brands eat its lunch, investors have continued to abandon its parent company, L Brands, causing its stock to swan-dive—72% over three years and 43% in 2018 alone...
And everybody's hatin' on the VS fashion show, it turns out, moaning about how "out of touch the brand still is."


Mandatory intercourse with transsexuals coming soon. (*Eye roll.*)