Where is Mike Jeffries, the ex-CEO of Abercrombie & Fitch now?
He left the company in 2014
Netflix’s newest documentary White Hot: The Rise and Fall of Abercrombie & Fitch tells the story of Abercrombie & Fitch under the leadership of former CEO Mike Jeffries.
The documentary is just 90 minutes long and yet covers how Abercrombie began as an outdoor equipment store and grew to become the most popular brand known for half naked men, logo T-shirts and a cologne you can smell from a mile away.
As explained in the documentary Abercrombie was bought by Leslie Wexner and in 1992 he brought in Mike Jeffries as the CEO of the brand. Under Jeffries’ leadership Abercrombie became what it is now most remembered for today – a brand obsessed with exclusion and elitism. As Jeffries said in one infamous interview they were going “after the cool kids”.
White Hot covers exactly how Jeffries transformed the brand and the meticulous level of detail he was obsessed with when running his company. It also goes into the decline of Abercrombie & Fitch’s popularity after the company faced many lawsuits.
After years of scandal Jeffries left the company in 2014 but why exactly did he leave? And what is he up to now?
Why did Mike Jeffries leave Abercrombie & Fitch?
Throughout Mike Jeffries’ career at Abercrombie he secured billions of sales for the brand and though the brand itself faced a number of scandals, a few of these were directly associated with Mike.
In 2006 when Mike was interviewed by Salon magazine he said Abercrombie was specifically for the “cool kids” and he didn’t want “overweight” or “unattractive” people wearing the clothing. His comments went under the radar until 2013 when Benjamin O’Keefe shared a petition to get Abercrombie & Fitch to apologise for Jeffries’ words.
Soon Jeffries released a statement saying the brand was opposed to discrimination and bullying.
In 2010 a lawsuit was filed against Abercrombie by a pilot who believed he had been fired from the job because he was too old to fly the company’s jet. As part of the lawsuit the 47 page manual that has specific requirements for staff on the plane was released.
The plane was mainly used by Jeffries, his partner and their dogs. As part of the rules crew could only respond to commands with the phrase “no problem”, crew were only allowed to eat on flights longer than two hours, they had to spray the beds with sleep spray and multiple other restrictions were created by Mike and his partner Matthew Smith.
By the end of 2014 profits for Abercrombie were less than half of what they were in 2012 and Jeffries’ pay had been cut by 70 per cent. On 7th December 2014 Jeffries was working but the next day he failed to show up for work and the chairman of the board announced Jeffries had left the company.
Where is Mike Jeffries now?
Since leaving Abercrombie & Fitch in 2014 not much has been heard from Mike Jeffries.
According to Esquire Mike still lives in Ohio with his partner Matthew Smith and their three dogs. Mike is said to still hold some shares in Abercrombie.
In 2016 he put up his New York townhouse for sale for $20million, however it didn’t sell for another year at the reduced price of $12million.
White Hot: The Rise & Fall of Abercrombie & Fitch is available on Netflix now. For all the latest Netflix news, drops, quizzes and memes like The Holy Church of Netflix on Facebook.
Featured image credit: Mark Lennihan/AP/Shutterstock