L Brands, Inc. announced a partnership with Next PLC for its company-owned Victoria’s Secret business in the United Kingdom and Ireland.
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Under the agreement, which is subject to regulatory clearance, Victoria’s Secret U.K. and Next PLC have formed a joint venture (“JV”), where the JV will acquire the majority of the assets of the Victoria’s Secret U.K. business that is currently in Administration.
The newly formed JV will operate all Victoria’s Secret stores in the U.K. and Ireland, subject to agreeing to terms with landlords. The U.K. digital (online) business, which is currently operated by Victoria’s Secret in the United States, will be folded into the JV in Spring 2021. Under the terms of the agreement, Next PLC will own 51 percent of the JV, while Victoria’s Secret will own 49 percent.
Martin Waters, CEO of L Brands International, commented “We are pleased to take this next step in our profit improvement plan for Victoria’s Secret. Next’s capabilities and experience in the U.K. market are substantial, and our partnership will provide meaningful growth opportunities for the business.”
Lord Simon Wolfson, Chief Executive of Next PLC, added “Next is very pleased at the prospect of working in partnership to expand the Victoria’s Secret brand in the U.K. and Ireland both in stores and online.”
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Rob Harding, Administrator at Deloitte, said “This is an ideal way to secure the future of more than 500 employees in the U.K. We are grateful to the creditors for working with us to deliver a solution that enables this business to survive and prosper.”