The company’s shares were off roughly 11 percent in afternoon trading for a market value of $1.34 billion. Guess shares are so far off about 7 percent for the year.
Model Kate Upton on Wednesday took Marciano to task on Instagram and Twitter, alluding to misconduct by the Guess executive chairman and chief creative officer. Upton wrote on Instagram that Marciano “shouldn’t be allowed to use his power in the industry to sexually and emotionally harass women #metoo.” She made a similar statement on Twitter writing, “It’s disappointing that such an iconic women’s brand @Guess is still empowering Paul Marciano as their creative director #metoo.”
Representatives for Upton, Guess and Marciano did not respond to requests for comment.
In 2009, Marciano and Guess were in Los Angeles Superior Court after former fit model Lindsey Ring accused the executive of inappropriate touching and sexual comments. Attorneys for Ring ultimately filed to have the case dismissed a few months later.
The news about Upton’s allegations, which began rolling out late Wednesday, appeared to go largely unnoticed Wednesday evening as Marciano and Guess chief executive officer Victor Herrero celebrated the reveal of its spring campaign with Jennifer Lopez and several Guess models. Lopez sang the company’s praises, calling its hiring of her to appear in its campaign partly about setting a new tone in how the company casts its Guess Girls. “[With] Guess I picture just very young models doing their thing. I didn’t think they’d be calling a mom of two who’s been in the business for 20 years to be the next Guess Girl,” Lopez said.
Marciano is now part of a growing list of high-profile names in the fashion industry who have faced allegations of sexual harassment, including Bruce Weber, Mario Testino and Terry Richardson, as scrutiny heightens around the industry’s treatment of models. A number of brands and magazines pulled the plug on their relationships with the three men once the allegations surfaced.
For Marciano, Upton’s allegations would seem to fly in the face of the executive’s work as head of the Guess Foundation, which teams annually with the nonprofit Peace Over Violence to raise awareness for and fight against sexual violence.