Still Mourning the Loss of Victoria's Secret Swimsuits? They're Coming Back
Okay, so maybe you're thinking of boycotting the brand after an exec's recent rude remarks, but you're going to want to read this.
Victoria's Secret is finally listening to its customers. Er, kind of.
No, the The L Brands-owned retailer is not hiring a more diverse cast of models, nor is it firing Ed Razek, the chief marketing officer whose inflammatory comments about transgender and plus-size models had the internet fuming ahead of the annual Victoria's Secret Fashion Show which was filmed last month. (Related: ThirdLove Responds to That Inflammatory Victoria's Secret Interview)
They are, however, bringing back swimwear. During an annual earnings call on Monday, L Brands CFO Stuart Burgdoerfer said, "as we evaluate the situation today, [we have made] a very important decision and we believe a good one to reenter the swim business again, driven principally by customer feedback that we've received." (Related: What If Victoria's Secret Doesn't Want to Change?)
The brand decided to do away with the much-loved category in 2016 to focus on activewear (this was, after all, at the height of the "athleisure" moment). At its peak, VS Swim was a $500 million business, and it even launched a "Swim Special" on CBS in 2015.
Also on the call, it was revealed that Jan Singer, the CEO who resigned following Razek's controversy, would be replaced by Tory Burch's John Mehas, who will start in 2019. The company is "not going to spend a lot of time looking back frankly," added Burgdoerfer.
Can swim save Victoria's Secret from its steadily declining sales and store closures? Unless the brand uses size and gender-inclusive models, we can't be so sure.
This story was originally published on InStyle.com by Sam Reed.