Home fragrance is a million dollar industry these days. Some of the leading companies in the industry have been around for decades, bringing scented candles and other fragrance products to homes throughout the world. One such company is the Yankee Candle Company, Inc., headquartered in Massachusetts. The company got its start in 1969 when seventeen-year-old Michael Kittredge was looking for something to give his mother for Christmas. He made her a scented candle from melted crayons, but sold it to a neighbor for $2 instead of giving it to her for Christmas. When neighbors began requesting the candles, he produced them in larger quantities. By 1973 Kittredge had outgrown his parents’s garage and moved production to an old mill in Holyoke, MA. Kittredge initially called his company Candles by Michael Kittredge, but changed it to Yankee Candle Company because he believed it would sell more candles.
The Yankee Candle Company grew to thirty employees by the late 1970s and the company hit $1 million in sales only ten short years after moving production to Holyoke. Kittredge continued to nurture and grow the company, opening several retail locations in New England before selling the company to Forstmann Little for $500 million in 1998.
Today, the Yankee Candle Company is a fixture in most shopping malls; and their products are available through other retailers, including Bed, Bath and Beyond. They produce hundreds of scents, both permanent and seasonal, and a wide range of products, including jar candles, scented tarts, votives, reed diffusers, plug-in units, car scents, room sprays and a variety of accessories.