Yankee Candle parent company lays of 13% of employee base companywide

The parent company of Yankee Candle, Newell Brands, has laid off 13 percent of their employee base companywide and the closure of their South Deerfield corporat
Published: Jan. 24, 2023 at 4:24 PM EST|Updated: Jan. 24, 2023 at 4:51 PM EST
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

SOUTH DEERFIELD, MA (WGGB/WSHM) - The parent company of Yankee Candle, Newell Brands, has laid off 13 percent of their employee base companywide and the closure of their South Deerfield corporate office.

Newell announced the layoff on Monday and the South Deerfield closure will not affect the retail store there. In a letter to employees, Newell Brands CEO Ravi Saligram wrote:

“As we’ve talked about on many occasions, we need to cut overhead expenses and adjust our budgets to the reality of the economic environment and the performance of our company.”

Western Mass News reached out to Western New England University management professor Thomas Woodside, who actually used to work in marketing at Yankee Candle. He explained how this move is an effort to reduce costs and hopefully increase shares of the company.

“The responsibility of management is to create shareholder value and so a company like Newell, which is a public company, has to deliver increased shareholder value, make more money, and be more profitable,” Woodside explained.

However, he believes this move will have unintended consequences as South Deerfield is where Yankee Candle was born.

“This is a place where Mike Kittredge started this business. It was a family-run business in many ways. There was a lot of creative energy creating these really wonderful scents and these really cool candles. When you start moving people into a central office, where is that creativity going to come from?” Woodside asked.

He also believes this is only a short-term solution and that Newell may switch gears in a few years as they realize the company may need those employees to prosper.

“Many times, what happens is companies cut into the bone, so to speak, and then all of a sudden, they wake up a year later and say ‘Gee, we cut too many people’ and that’s why this initiative or that initiative isn’t happening,” Woodside noted.

Woodside said we may see this move from other companies as well as they fear a recession may be in our future.