There's more news from the retail world this week as L Brands, parent company of Victoria's Secret and Bath & Body Works, announced plans to close permanently close approximately 300 stores across Canada and the United States.
L Brands have seen their overall sales decline by approximately 37% in the first quarter, with the COVID-19 pandemic a large contributing factor, as the company has shut down all stores in North America since March 17. Online sales did not escape unscathed either, as Victoria's Secret shut down their distribution centres for approximately one week, and the Victoria's Secret online business was also shuttered briefly.
While the company tried to save money where possible -- a statement made along their first-quarter earnings report states that senior VPs and above took a 20% salary cut, and other payments, such as those made to vendors and store rent were suspended -- L Brands still announced the need to permanently close approximately 250 Victoria's Secret locations as well as 51 Bath & Body Works.
The bulk of the announced closures will take place in the United States. At this time, 13 Victoria's Secret stores, and only 1 Bath & Body Works location are slated for closure in Canada.
L Brands is just the latest retail company hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic, as this month has also seen Reitmans and ALDO both file for creditor protection, J. Crew file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, and Pier 1 announce the closure of all their stores in Canada and the United States.
At this time it's unknown exactly which Canadian locations will be impacted or when the closures are expected to take place.