Victoria's Secret owner Limited Brands Inc was on Monday been named the world's most admired specialty retailer by Fortune magazine in its annual compilation of the world's leading companies.

The Ohio-based operator of more than 4,000 stores finished second in the list last year but this year achieved high marks in nine categories including innovation, employee talent, social responsibility and quality of management.

"We are honoured to be recognised for our continuing efforts to build a family of the world's best fashion brands to drive sustained growth of shareholder value over the long term," said CEO and chairman Leslie Wexner.