Friday, 24 November, 2017

The thrill is gone ... Sears-Whirlpool split after 100 years

After 101 Years Sears Will Stop Selling Whirlpool Appliance Tim Boyle Getty Images File
Heather Davidson | 27 October, 2017, 01:03

Whirlpool is the biggest US appliance maker, whose brands include Maytag, Jenn-Air and KitchenAid appliances. Remaining inventory will be sold, but no new orders are being planned.

The U.S. appliance giant on Monday reported third-quarter profit and sales below analysts' estimates, hurt by higher raw material prices which are expected to rise through 2018.

The retailer will no longer sell Whirlpool-brand appliances and will no longer sell its products, which includes Maytag, KitchenAid and Jenn-Air, according to a note sent to its stores last week.

Whirlpool officials said the manufacturer notified Sears on May 1 that it would no longer supply its products to the department store effective October 27.

Sears will now sell continue to sell appliances under Kenmore - a private label brand that will continue to be supplied by Whirlpool Corporation - and appliances from other unaffiliated brands, like LG, Samsung, GE, Frigidaire, Electrolux and Bosch. "Our total sales to Sears are trending to approximately 3 percent of our global sales, and our branded business represents a very small portion of that overall business".

In an attempt to boost sales, Sears said this summer it would also sell Kenmore products on Amazon. Sears later invested in the company as consumer demand grew.

Whirlpool is telling its side of the story, as the appliance maker cuts a century-old partnership with Sears Holdings.

"Thus, we are implementing strong actions to deliver our long-term goals, including recently-announced global cost-based price increases and a fixed cost reduction initiative", he said.

In an internal memo to its employees, Sears cited a dispute over pricing as its reason for cutting ties with Whirlpool. Sears announced it would close more than 300 Sears or Kmart locations this year as part of the cost-cutting campaign.

However, its shares fell more than 10% in afternoon trading in NY, while Sears shed more than 3%.

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