Shares of Victoria’s Secret owner L Brands are rising after the retailer raised prospects, reintroducing the dividend

Pedestrians walk past a Victoria’s Secret store in New York, a subsidiary of L Brands.

Craig Warga | Bloomberg | Getty Images

L Brands shares rose nearly 7% in premarket trading on Friday after the company raised its earnings outlook for the current quarter and announced it would reintroduce an annual dividend, pay off debt and buy back shares.

L Brands said in the press release that it plans to repay $ 1.03 billion in debt with $ 1.1 billion in cash. The company also announced a new $ 500 million share buyback plan to replace its existing program, which has $ 79 million remaining.

L Brands, which owns lingerie brand Victoria’s Secret and Bath & Body Works, also announced it would reintroduce its annual dividend of 60 cents per share, starting with a quarterly dividend paid out in June.

Building on the momentum of the holidays, L Brands now predicts that earnings per share will be between 55 and 65 cents in the first quarter, down from 35 and 45 cents previously.

CEO Andrew Meslow said in a statement that while the current retail environment remains uncertain during the Covid pandemic, the company has improved its outlook based on the strong sales and profits it has posted since the beginning of the year.

L Brands is continuing its plans to separate Victoria’s Secret from Bath & Body Works, which are expected to be completed by August. The company has announced that this will either be done through a spin-off or a sale to another company. Last year, L Brands signed an agreement to sell Victoria’s Secret to private equity firm Sycamore Partners. However, the $ 525 million deal fell apart when the health crisis temporarily shut down the company’s operations.

L Brands stocks are up more than 180% in the past 12 months. The company has a market capitalization of $ 15.53 billion.

The full press release from L Brands can be found here.

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