Victoria’s Secret Direct enjoys robust 3Q performance

Online sales reflect turnaround for L Brands, which employs 900 in Kettering call center

Both Victoria’s Secret Direct and its parent company, Columbus-based L Brands (formerly The Limited), turned in strong third-quarter financial performances, a turnaround of sorts for the mail-order portion of the business.

The company’s health is important to the Dayton area because L Brands operates its largest customer service call center in the nation on Bigger Road in south Kettering. The L Brands Customer Care Center employs about 900, although the employment number fluctuates seasonally, and L Brands spokeswoman told this news organization in August.

The Kettering call center handles inbound and customer service contacts for Victoria’s Secret, PINK, Bath & Body Works, Henri Bendel and La Senza.

Earnings per share for the third quarter ended Oct. 31 rose 25 percent to a record 55 cents compared to 44 cents for the same period in 2014. Third quarter net income rose to $164 million, up from $131.8 million last year.

The company reported net sales of $2.482 billion for the quarter, and same-store sales increased 7 percent for the quarter. L Brands CEO Leslie Wexner said the company is “well-positioned for the most significant part of our year which is in front of us.”

Third-quarter sales for Victoria’s Secret Direct increased 4 percent to $285.4 million, closing with a strong October, when sales jumped 7 percent, company officials said. That represents a turnaround from the previous quarter that ended Aug. 1, when online sales fell 4 percent. At that time, L Brands officials said the sales slowdown was anticipated because the company has been dropping some clothing lines such as jeans, dresses and sweaters.

A jump in sales in core products “more than offset the exit of apparel” in the third quarter, company officials said.

L. Brands operates nearly 3,000 company-owned specialty stores in the U.S., Canada and the United Kingdom, and its brands are sold in more than 650 more non-company-owned locations worldwide.