“As part of L Brands’ strategy, the company remains committed to establishing Bath & Body Works as a pure-play public company,” and is preparing for Victoria’s Secret to operate as a separate company, L Brands said in a news release.

The deal was already in jeopardy after Sycamore Partners informed Victoria’s Secret parent company L Brands of its decision to pull out of the agreement last week.

In mid-March, L Brands temporarily closed its retail stores, including Victoria’s Secret and Bath and Body Works, because of the coronavirus pandemic. Sycamore Partners argued those changes were in violation of the transaction, according to the Wall Street Journal.
L Brands and Sycamore Partners came to an agreement to split control of Victoria’s Secret in February. The private equity firm would buy a 55% stake, while L Brands would retain control of the remaining 45%. Victoria’s Secret was set to be spun off into a fully private company.

Leslie Wexner, the 82-year-old billionaire that has run L Brands for several decades and was under intense scrutiny for his close ties to disgraced financier Jeffrey Epstein, will step down as CEO and chairman as previously planned, the company said. Wexner will remain a member of the board as chairman emeritus.

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