Whirlpool Corporation Celebrates Its 100th Anniversary
PR Newswire

BENTON HARBOR, Mich., Nov. 11, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Whirlpool Corporation (NYSE: WHR), the world's leading manufacturer and marketer of major home appliances, is holding a number of local events today to commemorate its official 100th anniversary.  Employees throughout the world will be recognized with activities that reflect the company's tradition and core values.

(Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20040202/DETU004LOGO )

"From the company's earliest days, we were dedicated to improving the lives of our consumers, and it is as relevant today as it was 100 years ago," said Jeff M. Fettig, Whirlpool Corporation chairman and chief executive officer. "'Every home ... everywhere.  Improving lives one home, one family at a time.' It's a simple phrase, but it holds deep meaning.  We are a part of consumers' lives; we are there for the important moments, large and small, by bringing unique solutions to every home, every family ... everywhere.

"Since its founding in a small Midwestern Michigan town by Lou Upton, Emory Upton and Lowell Bassford, Whirlpool Corporation has revolutionized the home appliance industry with innovative consumer solutions.  We're proud of our American heritage and our growth to become the world's appliance leader," said Fettig.

During the past 100 years, Whirlpool Corporation has become a global company with a legacy of strong financial performance, employee empowerment, consumer-driven innovation and corporate social responsibility.  Some key milestones include:

  • 1911 – The Upton Machine Company is founded to produce electric motor-driven wringer washers.
  • 1929 – Growing demand requires the Upton Machine Company to merge with Nineteen Hundred Washer Company. The new firm is called The Nineteen Hundred Corporation.
  • 1948 – The Nineteen Hundred Corporation successfully launches the first Whirlpool brand name automatic washing machine.
  • 1950 – The company is renamed Whirlpool Corporation; automatic dryers added to product line.
  • 1967 – The company launches the 24-hour Cool Line customer service help line, the first toll-free support program in the United States.
  • 1969 – Elisha "Bud" Gray, chairman and CEO, and John Platts, president, write a letter on sustainability to shareholders, articulating the company's need to engage in social issues, including reducing the human impact on the environment. Gray then defines a new sustainability-centered business model.
  • 1975 – Whirlpool plays key role in crafting U.S. Energy Policy and Conservation Act.
  • 1986 – Whirlpool purchases the iconic KitchenAid brand.
  • 1998 – Whirlpool begins its long-standing support of the Boys & Girls Club of Benton Harbor.
  • 1999 – Whirlpool initiates partnership with Habitat for Humanity International – donating product and engaging employees around the world to volunteer and help families in 22 countries to obtain affordable housing.
  • 2003 – Whirlpool Corporation becomes the world's first appliance manufacturer to set a global greenhouse gas reduction target.
  • 2010 – Whirlpool breaks ground on a new, riverfront office campus in Benton Harbor; breaks ground on a new LEED-certified manufacturing facility in Cleveland, Tennessee; and opens the World of Whirlpool, a new product experience and training facility, in Chicago.  

For press materials, logos and images related to Whirlpool Corporation's year-long celebration of its 100th anniversary visit: http://www.whirlpoolcorp.com/100.  

About Whirlpool Corporation

Whirlpool Corporation is the world's leading manufacturer and marketer of major home appliances, with annual sales of more than $18 billion in 2010, 71,000 employees, and 66 manufacturing and technology research centers around the world. The company markets Whirlpool, Maytag, KitchenAid, Jenn-Air, Amana, Brastemp, Consul, Bauknecht and other major brand names to consumers in nearly every country around the world. Additional information about the company can be found at www.whirlpoolcorp.com.

About Whirlpool Corporation's 100th Anniversary

Founded on November 11, 1911, Whirlpool Corporation's time- and labor-saving appliance innovations have influenced home and family life during the last century. Driven by the belief that everyone needs a comfortable place to call home, Whirlpool Corporation is focused on improving lives one family, one home at a time.

SOURCE Whirlpool Corporation