L Brands on Monday announced a series of leadership changes at its Bath & Body Works banner, including tapping former Ascena executive Julie Rosen as president and Ross Stores executive Deon Riley as chief human resources officer.
Rosen spent 20 years at Gap Inc. in various merchandising roles. Until September, she was president of the Loft, Ann Taylor, Lou & Grey, Ann Taylor Factory Stores and Loft Outlet at Ascena, where she worked for four years, according to her Linkedin page. Riley spent the past eight years at Ross Stores, most recently as group senior vice president of HR, culture, and diversity and inclusion, per L Brands' release. Before that, she held human resources roles at Abercrombie & Fitch.
Others were promoted from within, including Chris Cramer to chief operating officer; Danielle Demko to executive vice president and general manager of the brand's direct channel; George Arenschield to executive vice president, merchandise, planning and allocation; and Ron Ford to executive vice president and head of stores and sales.
L Brands is switching up the team at Bath & Body Works while continuing its project to spin off the personal care business into a separate company.
The once sprawling conglomerate, which will be left with its long-struggling Victoria's Secret business once the project is complete, has already been figuring out some of the details, executives said earlier this month. L Brands CFO Stuart Burgdoerfer said in August that integrating shared functions into each brand was in the works. The company had hired Goldman Sachs and J.P. Morgan for advice on "a range of alternatives" in how it could separate the businesses, he said.
Some of the details that the company needed to work out to sell Victoria's Secret to private equity firm Sycamore Partners, a deal that ultimately failed due to the pandemic-driven changes in the retail landscape, helped the separation process, executives also said recently.
While in its most recent quarter Victoria's Secret showed new signs of life, with profits up on lower sales thanks to fewer discounts, Bath & Body Works has consistently been the better performer in recent years. That led some investors and analysts to push for a separation, which could come early in the new year.
Rosen and Riley will report to L Brands CEO Andrew Meslow, who in a statement said the new team will further those superior results.
"These appointments and promotions will support the continued growth of Bath & Body Works," Meslow said. "Julie is an experienced and talented merchant leader who will lead us in continuing to develop compelling products across all categories, and Deon is a well-rounded and experienced human resources professional who will elevate our efforts to cultivate a healthy and thriving company culture. These two high-caliber individuals are excellent additions to our executive leadership team."