Months after speculation arose that the 2019 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show would not be held, parent company L Brands Inc. has confirmed the rumors. Its Chief Financial Officer Stuart Burgdoerfer made the revelation during a conference call on Thursday, November 21.
When asked if the annual fashion show would be held this holiday season, he said, “No, we’ll be communicating to costumers, but nothing that I would say is similar in magnitude to the fashion show… You can be sure we’ll be communicating with customers through lots of vehicles including social media and various, more current platforms, if you will.”
He continued, “It was a very important part of the brand building of this business and was an important aspect of the brand and a remarkable marketing achievement. We’re figuring out how to advance the positioning of the brand and best communicating that to customers.”
While Stuart didn’t give an exact reason why the show was canceled this year, many people have since been convinced that it was all because of Rihanna. For those who need a remainder, the Barbadian singer held a Savage X Fenty fashion show earlier this year and included every type of female model during the show, something that had never been done by Victoria’s Secret.
“Apparently Rihanna stepped up with her Fenty fashion show and had Victoria’s Secret shook,” one wrote. “I said it before I’ll say it again, Rihanna really killed & buried Victoria’s Secret. It’s official,” another said, with one other joking, “Victoria’s secret saw Rihanna’s very inclusive fenty show and knew they stood no chance.” Someone else echoed, “I can’t believe Rihanna single handedly ended Victoria’s Secret.”
There was also one who said, “lmao Rihanna really said my supreme creativity & Normani are my secret weapons and single-handedly ended Victoria’s Secret. We stan a BUSINESS WOMAN.” One person, meanwhile, said, “Because Rihanna showed you guys how it’s done. The idea of beauty has evolved. It’s no longer 5’10” stick thin white girls. Victoria’s Secret refused to change with society and now it’s a little late to do so and seems a bit like an after thought.”
Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show has generated controversy over the years for not being inclusive when it comes to the models. It got worse when then-chief marketing officer Ed Razek said that the brand would not cast transgender or plus-sized models “because the show is a fantasy.” His comment soon sparked backlash, but he had apologized. He stepped down earlier this year.