Longtime L Brands executive Ed Razek has announced plans to step down from his role as chief marketing officer, a position that included oversight of Victoria’s Secret‘s marketing efforts. The news was announced via an internal memo distributed by L Brands CEO Leslie Wexler, according to the Wall Street Journal.
Following a Vogue interview late in 2018 in which he dismissed casting trans or plus-sized models, Razek has become the poster boy for criticism that the company is out-of-step with modern day marketing practices that take a more inclusive approach.
Not long after the Vogue interview, Victoria’s Secret CEO Jan Singer stepped down and while Razek apologized, he made no mention of leaving the company, which has been as negatively impacted by declines in brick and mortar traffic and competition as marketing choices.
In addition to the company’s retail-related woes, Wexler has been plagued by his close association with convicted pedophile Jeffrey Epstein, who is currently in prison awaiting trial for having sex with minors. In April 2019, the Daily Beast reported a new Epstein accuser who said she was sexually assaulted in Wexler’s Ohio home.
The Razek announcement follows news the company has hired its first ever trans model, 22-year-old Brazilian model Valentina Sampaio, who was hired to shoot images for the company’s Pink line.