Whirlpool Corporation


The Whirlpool Corporation is an American multinational manufacturer and marketer of home appliances, headquartered in Benton Charter Township, Michigan, United States, near Benton Harbor, Michigan. The Fortune 500 company has annual revenue of approximately $21 billion, 92,000 employees, and more than 70 manufacturing and technology research centers around the world. The company markets Whirlpool, Maytag, KitchenAid, Jenn-Air, Amana, Gladiator GarageWorks, Inglis, Estate, Brastemp, Bauknecht, Ignis, Indesit, and Consul. Whirlpool Corporation is the world's largest home appliance maker. Their website also mentions Hotpoint, Diqua, Affresh, Acros, and Yummly brands.
The increasing volume of sales led Upton to merge with the Nineteen Hundred Washer Company of Binghamton, New York in 1929, adopting the name Nineteen Hundred Corporation. The company was relatively unaffected by the Great Depression; during World War II, its factories were converted to armament production. In 1947, it introduced an automatic, spinner-type washer sold by Sears under the "Kenmore" brand, and a year later, sold by the company under the "Whirlpool" brand name. Lou retired as president in 1949, and was replaced by Elisha "Bud" Gray II.
In January 2017, Whirpool announced that it would cut about 500 jobs from its Europe, Middle East and Africa dryer manufacturing unit by 2018. This decision provides the closure of the plant in Amiens, France, which became an issue in the 2017 French presidential election, with both Marine Le Pen and Emmanuel Macron visiting the workers on strike before the second round.
On Friday 19 August 2016 a fire broke out on the 7th floor of an 18-storey Shepherds Court building in Shepherd's Bush Green resulting in hundreds of residents needing to be evacuated. London Fire Brigade said 20 fire engines and 120 firefighters were sent to tackle the blaze at 3.44pm, and that it was under control by 5.30pm. Shadwell fire station manager Paul Hobbs said "The fire spread from the seventh floor via the outside of the building." The blaze spread upwards to engulf 5 storeys damaging flats from the seventh to eleventh storeys. The occupants were at home when smoke started pouring out of the tumble dryer and they alerted fire crews, with the fire later confirmed as being caused by a faulty Indesit branded Whirlpool tumble dryer. Although the appliance was the original source of ignition for the fire, the building's flammable external sheathing caused the conflagration. The curtain wall design using a metal sheet face over polystyrene foam over plywood was certified under a UK permit system that had no formal qualifications for the role of "fire risk assessor".
In December 2016, the UK's largest customer advocacy group, Which?, who had previously produced a list of the 113 models of tumble dryer at risk, took the unusual step to seeking a judicial review of Peterborough Trading Standards - the agency named as responsible for handling of the faulty tumble dryers sold by Whirlpool - labelling the handling as a “fiasco” and claiming that it has failed millions of consumers across the UK by not enforcing product safety laws. Peterborough city council had been dealing with Whirlpool because its UK head office is located in the city. The move was considered unusual as it was the first time Which? had made a formal legal move involving trading standards "in order to assess the lawfulness of its decision to allow householders to continue to use faulty machines, despite the risk of them bursting into flames".