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WHIRLPOOL

The Whirlpool Corporation is a globally operating American multinational manufacturer and marketer of household appliances, which has 70 production, research and development centers all over the world with 100,000 employees. Being headquartered in Benton Charter Township, Michigan, United States, Whirlpool carries out its activities in more than 170 countries.

The beginning of the Whirlpool story can be attributed to 1908, when Lou Upton put his money into a company to produce home apparatus. After that company’s failure, as a part of compensation for his investment Upton got the patents on a hand washer. In 1911 Lou Upton, his uncle Emory and his younger brother Fred organized the Upton Machine Company with the aim to produce motor-driven wringer washing machines.

The moral basics of the business have been created in those first years of the company’s activities. It was then when the Upton Machine Company got a big order for manufacturing 100 washers. But it turned out that a cast-iron gear failed in the transmission of machines, and Louis Upton’s decision was to change the defective components with new cut-steel gears at no cost. Impressed by such approach of the producer, the customer immediately doubled his order.

In 1929 as a result of merging of the Upton Machine with the Nineteen Hundred Washer Company of Binghamton, New York, a new company, called the Nineteen Hundred Corporation, appeared in the market. It contributed to satisfying the increasing demands of clients, developing new products and technological novelties, as well as strengthening of engineering and sales. The business was growing and expanding despite the Great Depression of the 1930s.

During the years of the Second World War the company switched to the production of parts for aircrafts and military facilities. Over two million military pieces were manufactured.

After the war, due to the extensive growth of sales and production, the company has developed into a major producer of household appliances. In 1949, the Nineteen Hundred Corporation was renamed into Whirlpool Corporation and started to produce fully-automatic washer and electric dryer under the Whirlpool brand.

Aiming to expand the range of the offered products, Whirlpool Corporation commenced merging with other companies. In 1955 Whirlpool acquired Seeger Refrigerator Company and RCA’s air conditioning and range businesses. In 1960 Whirlpool purchased the appliance unit from International Harvester Company. The merging provided the company with the possibility to supply new lines of quality products satisfying the demands of customers. In 1957, in order to enter the Brazilian market and be considered competitive, Whirlpool Corporation entered into partnerships with Brazil’s Brasmotor S.A.

In October 1960 Whirlpool got an order from the government to design and produce the first space kitchen. All appliances had to be small, including refrigerators, freezers, ovens, food storage containers, disposal units. A number of innovations have been introduced, especially if to consider that everything was designed for the conditions of weightlessness.

By the beginning of 1970s, Whirlpool has been marketing a wide range of appliances needed in every house to perform household duties easily and effectively. Striving for becoming a global leader in the home appliance industry Whirlpool expanded its presence in the international markets throughout Europe, Latin America, Asia and parts of Africa.

Being very dynamic in designing, producing and marketing, Whirlpool has never forgotten about its customers, their economic capabilities. In 1957, a credit system named Whirlpool Financial Corporation was created for the convenience of home appliances’ buyers. Later it was decided to improve direct communication with customers, and for this purpose the first toll-free consumer service support program in the United States called Cool-Line was launched.