It appears the rumors have been true: Trump Model Management is shutting down. Mother Jones has obtained a leaked email confirming that parent company, the Trump Organization, is getting out of the modeling business:
Over the weekend, Corinne Nicolas, president of Trump Models, informed industry colleagues of the pending closure of the 18-year-old agency, in which Trump owns an 85 percent stake (according to his most recent financial disclosure). “The Trump Organization is choosing to exit the modeling industry,” Nicolas wrote in the email. “On the heels of the recent sale of the Miss Universe Organization, the company is choosing to focus on their core businesses in the real estate, golf and hospitality space.”
When rumors of the closing first began last month, one modeling industry insider told Jezebel that she knew something was afoot when she heard that Trump Model Katherine Moore was meeting with other agents. “She’s doing so well and there’s no reason for her to leave unless the agency was closing,” she said. “To me, the fact that their best model is leaving is their biggest giveaway.”
The Trump Organization sold Miss Universe to the WME-IMG Talent Agency in September 2015, after outcry over Trump’s racist comments about Mexicans. According to industry insiders, models and agents have been leaving Trump Models as “a direct result of Trump’s divisive politics, which have made his brand toxic in the modeling world.” The agency, founded in 1999, came under scrutiny in August, when Mother Jones interviewed several former Trump models who alleged that the agency put them in sweatshop conditions and employed them without valid visas.
Nicolas did not say when Trump Models will officially close and did not respond to Jezebel’s request for comment.