Victoria’s Secret & Co. late Tuesday announced a corporate shakeup that merges its Victoria’s Secret and Pink lingerie operations and beauty business into “a single, collaborative organization” focused on growth and profits. Amy Hauk, Pink CEO since 2018, will lead the integrated operation.
The company is also laying off 160 people in management roles, about 5% of its home office workforce, which as of Q3 will save some $40 million annually, per a press release.
Greg Unis, who led the beauty business since 2016, has been named chief growth officer. Christine Rupp has been named chief customer officer, arriving from Albertson’s, where she is chief customer and digital officer. Previously she led Fulfillment by Amazon and launched Amazon Prime Day.
Victoria’s Secret & Co. CEO Martin Waters has had great success in tossing aside Victoria’s Secret’s previous reputation as a women’s brand dependent on the male gaze. He’s admitted to mistakes and held firm against what in March he called “the haters.”
With the empowerment-based marketing firmly lodged in place, Waters appears to be getting down to business.
“Over the last year, we have progressed a thoughtful revolution of our business by redefining the VS brand and rebuilding our strategy for growth,” he said in a statement. “With our brand revolution well underway and gaining momentum, now is the time to reimagine our leadership structure to better align with a shifting consumer landscape and become more efficient as an organization.”
Uniting the company’s brands under Hauk’s leadership “will bring greater focus and discipline” to merchandising and speed things up, said Waters, who himself has been leading the namesake lingerie business for over a year. Unis is stepping away from the beauty business, but will continue to lead the company’s real estate and store design and construction teams, who are focused in part on expanding its store of the future initiative. In his new role, he will be also responsible for the new VS&Co-Lab platform, new business development, international expansion, and merger and acquisition opportunities, per the release.
Rupp has notched 30 years in retail, focused on e-commerce, and “will be responsible for creating a seamless store and digital commerce business globally and will be accountable for sales and profitability across both channels,” the company said.
Victoria’s Secret has some ground to cover, having lost share in recent years as many consumers moved on to brands whose marketing better reflected the times.
“With today's announcement, we believe [Victoria’s Secret & Co.] continues to make the right decisions to move towards a modern day VS including integrating digital with stores, building back relevancy, and improving their assortment and will look at opportunistic methods to grow their business,” B Riley analysts Susan Anderson and Alec Legg said in emailed comments Tuesday.