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Victoria's Secret cancels annual fashion show in order to 'evolve' company's message


The end of an era

Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for Victoria's Secret

The Victoria's Secret Fashion Show is no more, according to L Brands, which owns the women's clothing company.

The annual Victoria's Secret Fashion Show kicked off in 1995.

The announcement comes on the heels of the brand's lowest-ever ratings for its 2018 show.

What are the details?

According to a Fortune report, the company opted to cancel the yearly show in order to "evolve the messaging" of the company.

"We will be communicating to customers," CFO Stuart Burgdoerfer said during a recent earnings call, "but nothing similar in magnitude to the fashion show."

He also pointed out that finances had to do with the axing of the long-running show, which Fortune called an "extravagant marketing" tactic.

"Did we see specific material impact in terms of a short-term sales response to the airing of the fashion show? As a general matter, the answer to that question is no," he said.

Fortune reported that sales fell 7 percent in the latest quarter when compared to a 2 percent decrease year over year.

"With the exception of a small rise in the first quarter of 2018, Victoria's Secret same store sales have declined every quarter since Q4 2016," the outlet reported.

What else?

In addition to dwindling sales, the company has recently been plagued with scandals.

In 2018, Ed Razek — the company's former CFO — told Vogue that there was simply "no room" for transgender and plus-sized models, and called the show a "fantasy."

"It's a 42-minute entertainment special," he said of the fashion show. "That's what it is. It is the only one of its kind in the world."

In 2019, however, the company did hire its first transgender model for the brand's athletic line.

Earlier this year, it was revealed that Les Wexner — CEO of L Brands — was once a close friend of convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein, who reportedly hung himself in a Manhatten jail cell in August. Epstein would reportedly use his connection to the brand in order to gain access to young girls who wanted to be associated with the company.

Wexner distanced himself from Epstein and in a statement, said, "Being taken advantage of by someone who is ... so depraved is something I'm embarrassed I'm even close to. In the present, everyone has to feel enormous regret for the advantage that was taken of so many young women."

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