Yankee Candle to close Illuminations stores, direct business

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The Yankee Candle Company Inc. will close its 28 Illuminations retail stores and the Illuminations direct business as part of a restructuring plan intended to focus resources on the core Yankee Candle business.

The company also will close one underperforming Yankee Candle retail store and reduce its corporate and administrative workforce.

The restructuring plan will result in the termination of about 330 employees, including approximately 320 store employees and approximately 12 corporate and administrative personnel in the company's corporate headquarters.

The company expects to complete the restructuring plan by April 30.

“Given this unprecedented macroeconomic environment, particularly in the retail sector, we believe that this restructuring plan is necessary and appropriate as part of our ongoing efforts to reduce our cost structure, focus our resources primarily on our core Yankee Candle business, optimize our return on invested capital and increase our overall operating efficiency,” said Craig Rydin, chairman and CEO of Yankee Candle, in a statement.  

The Illuminations brand, which Yankee Candle acquired in July 2006, won't be disappearing completely, however. Yankee Candle plans to continue to develop and market Illuminations branded products, primarily through its wholesale business.

The company expects to incur charges related to the restructuring plan of approximately $18 million to $22 million in total.

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