Victoria’s Secret has announced plans to permanently close 250 stores in the United States and Canada in 2020. The move comes as more firms across the world continue to record a decline in business as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Back in February, Victoria Secret’s parent company L Brands planned to sell a majority stake ( 55%) in the company to New York’s private-equity firm, Sycamore Partners. However, the deal did not go through.
L Brands reported a net loss of $296.9 million during the first quarter of 2020, compared to a profit of $40.3 million in the same period last year. The company reported $1.65 billion in revenue in the three months to March, compared to $2.63 billion in the same period in 2019, with total net sales decreasing 37% to $1.65 billion.
Victoria’s Secret sales fell 46% to $821.5 million, with sales in the direct business declining 15% to $307.6 million. In April, when the online business was operational, and stores were closed, direct sales increased by 30%.
L Brands plans to permanently close 50 Bath & Body Works stores in the U.S. and one in Canada. Almost all of the company’s stores closed in the final weeks of the quarter because of COVID-19.
Victoria’s Secret is an American designer, manufacturer, and marketer of women’s lingerie, womenswear, and beauty products. As of early 2019, it was the largest lingerie retailer in the United States. The company has 1,091 stores in the U.S. and Canada.