Mei Xu on the Slow Burn to Success

This week on JobMakers, host Denzil Mohammed talks with Mei Xu, immigrant from China and founder of Chesapeake Bay Candle, which was acquired by Yankee Candle parent company Newell Brands for $75 million. Mei describes the journey to entrepreneurship, and how she created opportunities for herself. Today, she seeks to empower women business owners around the world, to show them that they too can expand economies and horizons with a little guidance. As she says in her new book, Burn: How grit, innovation, and a dash of luck ignited a multi-million dollar success story, “I hope to convince you, the American Dream remains vital and accessible to all of us,” as you’ll discover in this week’s JobMakers.


Mei Xu is a Chinese American entrepreneur, author and founder and CEO of three global companies, Yes She May, BlissLiving Home® and Chesapeake Bay Candle®. Xu successfully negotiated the sale of Chesapeake Bay Candle to Newell Brands in 2017, a conglomerate with a $14 billion portfolio of consumer goods. Mei is now focused on helping women-owned consumer product companies grow and prosper with e-commerce platform, Yes She May. In 2021, Mei launched her memoir, Burn: How Grit, Innovation, and a Dash of Luck Ignited a Multi-Million Dollar Success Story, that details her inspiring journey from coming to the United States as an immigrant to founding her own multi-million-dollar business. In addition to fostering women’s entrepreneurship, Ms. Xu also actively participates in impact investing, is a member of the Investment Committee of Halcyon Fund in Washington, DC, and serves as a trustee of the University of Maryland, Baltimore. Her business achievements have repeatedly been recognized by prominent organizations, such as Politico’s 2019 Woman of Impact Award; Smart CEO with the Brava Award; and the Asian American Chamber of Commerce with the Business Leader of the Year Award.

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