(extracted out from wikipedia.org)
Victoria’s Secret was started in San Francisco, California, in 1977 by Stanford Graduate School of Business alumnus Roy Raymond, who felt embarrassed trying to purchase lingerie for his wife in a department store environment.
He opened the first store at Stanford Shopping Center in Palo Alto, and quickly followed it with a mail-order catalog and three other stores. Victoria’s Secret at Briarwood Mall in Ann Arbor, Michigan The stores were meant to create a comfortable environment for men, with wood-paneled walls, Victorian details and helpful sales staff. Instead of racks of bras and panties in every size, there were single styles, paired together and mounted on the wall in frames. Men could browse for styles for women and sales staff would help estimate the appropriate size, pulling from inventory in the back rooms.
The company earned $500,000 its first year. Its five stores and a 42-page mail-order catalogue were grossing $6 million a year when Mr. Raymond sold them to The Limited for about $1 million in 1982. Raymond’s next business venture ended in bankruptcy. Raymond committed suicide by jumping from the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco in 1993.
The Limited kept the personalized image of Victoria’s Secret intact. Victoria’s Secret was rapidly expanded into the U.S. malls throughout the 1980s. The company was able to vend a widened range of products, such as shoes, evening wear, and perfumes, with its mail catalog issued eight times annually. By the early 1990s, Victoria’s Secret had become the largest American lingerie retailer, topping one billion dollars.
// interesting much?