In September 10th, the American underwear giant Vitoria's Secret (Victoria s Secret hereinafter referred to as "Wei") parent company, the American fashion group L Brands held the annual investor conference.
At the meeting, L Brands unveiled a profit making plan for the recently sluggish brands. Although the specific content is not yet clear, the main components include: brand new, more inclusive brand strategy, new store experience, and marketing reforms that are still being discussed to help narrow the distance between the brand and the core consumer.
"We all have a firm belief in reform. We should be led by her, and serve her," said John Mehas, the chief executive of the company.
The stock price of L Brands rose on the day after the news came out. As of October 9th closing, L Brands shares rose 3.8%, to 18.55 U.S. dollars per share.
Obviously, it is trying to reshape its brand image and make itself a brand that truly belongs to female consumers. But ironically, the 11 speakers at the conference, excluding the chief investment officer Amie Preston, had only 3 women, and only one of the girls' brand Pink CEO Amy Hauk gave a report.
Amy Hauk acknowledges that the pace of corporate change is too slow and the associated customer base is also. Pink (after realizing this) chose to cut stock, relocate to college students, turn to sports series, and adopt more diversified models in marketing.
According to the L Brands 2019 half year financial report, Pink brand sales in the second quarter were flat compared with the same period last year, and sales of sports underwear increased. Amy Hauk predicts that by 2020, sales of Pink sports underwear will reach US $1 billion. "We always learn from mistakes," Amy Hauk said.
Speaking of marketing reform, John Mehas said: "Amy's team is a little ahead of us. Now the brand has a chance to step back and reform. Our consumers have consistently expressed their expectations of brands, including inclusiveness, #metoo sports related, diversified models, and Rethinking the big show. We have basically reached agreement on these aspects. The point is, this has also provided the direction for the next step of the brand reform.
A participant who declined to be named revealed that he would like to confirm at the scene whether the existing leadership can lead the brand to complete the reform, especially considering that the existing management team of the brand is mainly male, and the result is surprised that the number of women is less.
Another participant also mentioned in the question and answer session, "why did the company not choose a woman to lead the underwear business? Instead, it chose Mehas". To address this problem, the founder and chairman of L Brands revealed that the leading brands of the former were women and pointed out that "John Mehas is the first male executive, and we do not want to discriminate against him".
The obvious gender color in brand DNA also doomed the long road of rebuilding the brand image. The purpose of the establishment was to make men feel more comfortable shopping with women. In 1970s, because Roy was embarrassed when he went to the department store to buy underwear with his wife, he created a shop that allowed male customers to comfortably buy underwear for women. This is the birth of Raymond. Since then, the brand has been developing rapidly, and has succeeds in the ranks of American underwear giants. It has occupied 33% to 40% of the market share in the underwear market of the United States.
But in recent years, with women becoming more independent, "confidence" instead of "sexy" has become a new key word. They are no longer restricted by traditional pipeline aesthetics. Based on this, it advocates the rapid emergence of Savage x Fenty, Aerie, ThirdLove and other Internet lingerie brands. However, it has gradually lost the popularity of consumers.
In the second quarter of fiscal year 2019, the sales of the stores fell by 6% compared with the same period last year, which is the fifth consecutive quarterly decline in the brand.
In order to reverse the situation, L Brands has tried to make a series of reforms to the brand in the past year.
After three years, decided to re promote swimsuit category.
Management change: hire Tory Burch former brand President John Mehas as the chief executive of the company, and appoint Amy Hauk, director of sales & Product Department of Bath & Body Works as the new chief executive officer of Pink.
Cooperate with French designer underwear brand Livy to launch high-end underwear series.
In May, it announced that it had stopped playing the annual exhibition of WiMAX through the TV network. The chief marketing officer Ed Razek, who has been in charge of the show, also left office in the summer.
It is the first time to employ cross sex models to shoot blockbusters to demonstrate the inclusiveness and diversity of brands.
Earlier this year, radical investors and hedge fund Barington Capital pushed for change, hoping that L Brands could divestiture its secrets or split Bath and Body Works into the market. In addition, the investor has successfully recommended two new female board members to increase the proportion of female directors of the company to more than 40%. At that time, James Mitarotonda, chairman of Barington Capital, clearly pointed out that the board of directors of L Brands lacked diversity. Of the 12 members, there are not only 9 men but few movements. Several have served as members of the board for decades.