News reports this morning signal the possible end of a 57-year run for the retail magnate, America's longest-serving CEO.
Les Wexner, America's longest-serving CEO and the wealthiest person in Ohio, may step down from his role atop the retail empire he built starting with a $5,000 loan from his aunt in 1963.
Reports in the Columbus Dispatch and Wall Street Journal this morning signal Wexner's plans to relinquish day-to-day control of L Brands as the company's board of directors considers selling Victioria's Secret, which has been bleeding market share amid #MeToo and as cultural norms shift body-positive for women of all shapes and sizes.
Shares of L Brands (NYSE:L) were up 12 percent to more than $20 on the news.
Wexner has been the subject of scrutiny and criticism during the past year for his close ties to sexual predator Jeffrey Epstein, the billionaire financier found dead of apparent suicide in his New York jail cell last year. Wexner has repeatedly said he had no idea Epstein was luring girls as young as 14 into sexual relationships with him, and that he severed ties with him years ago.