Former Unilever executive Gina Boswell will be chief executive officer of Bath & Body Works and join its board as of Dec. 1, the personal care retailer said Wednesday.
She replaces Sarah Nash, who has served as interim CEO since May, after the departure of Andrew Meslow. Nash, who has also been executive chair of the board, will continue to serve in that board role until Jan. 28, when she will transition back to board chair, per a company press release.
Boswell has more than 30 years of executive experience, including in beauty and personal care. In addition to her eight-year tenure at Unilever, she had leadership roles at Alberto Culver, Avon and Estee Lauder, per her LinkedIn page.
Bath & Body Works was among the few specialty retailers that actually benefited from the pandemic, as consumers bought up hand sanitizers, soaps and its popular candles. As that waned this year, the company cut prices as sales dropped.
But many analysts see plenty of potential for the brand, with UBS analysts last month noting “strong near-term and long-term top-line growth opportunities.” Bath & Body Works retains high levels of loyalty, and a strong following among candle aficionados. In her statement, Boswell noted that among its strengths.
“I see tremendous potential to leverage the Company’s deep customer connections, significant product innovation capabilities and vertically integrated supply chain to advance Bath & Body Works’ growth and drive shareholder value,” she said. “I look forward to partnering with the Board, leadership team and the talented associates across the organization to build on and accelerate the Company’s leadership as a global omnichannel personal care and home fragrance brand.”
Boswell is steeped in the beauty and personal care industry and has what Nash in a statement called “an impressive track record of driving profitable growth.”
“Gina’s customer-centric mindset, multi-channel expertise and passion for building high-performance cultures make her the ideal leader for Bath & Body Works’ next growth chapter,” Nash said.