L Brands negotiates through pandemic with record Q3 sales

By Becky Bargh | Published: 19-Nov-2020

The exponential growth of the bathroom products during the Covid-19 lockdown helped bolster sales for the group’s Bath & Body Works brand

L Brands has recovered its sales for Q3 thanks to an uptick in bath and body products during the coronavirus lockdown.

The group was primarily carried through the quarter by the success of Bath & Body Works, which surged 56% in comparable sales for Q3, as products for self-care rose exponentially.

However, Victoria Secret’s sales, despite being dwarfed next to Bath & Body Works’, also saw an uptick of 4%.

“L Brands reported a record third quarter, driven by exceptional results and continued strength at Bath & Body Works, and a significant improvement in performance at Victoria’s Secret,” said L Brands’ CEO Andrew Meslow.

“On behalf of the Board of Directors and the management team, I’d like to express our sincere appreciation to our associates, who hard work and dedication during these unprecedented times made these results possible.

“As we head into the holidays, our inventories are well-positioned and we are encouraged by customers’ early response to our merchandise assortments.”

Overall, the beauty owner recorded net sales of US$3bn for the 13 weeks ended 31 October compared with $2.67bn for the same period last year, equating to a 28% boost in comparable sales for the quarter.

Operating income for the quarter stands at $550.7m, a 454.4m uptick on 2019’s results.

Excluding taxes, the group’s third quarter earnings per share were $1.13 compared with $0.02 in 2019.

But Meslow warned the group was not confident to clear last year’s Q4 results.

“We are cautious about our ability to exceed last year’s fourth quarter sales and earnings results, given anticipated constraints on store traffic, online fulfillment and shipping capacity, as well as other uncertainties related to the Covid-19 pandemic.

“We are confident in the strength of our brands and remain focused on execution and delivering the best possible outcome for the fourth quarter.”

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