Whirlpool Celebrates 100 Years

November 18, 2011

 Whirlpool Corporation is celebrating its 100th anniversary! To mark the occasion, the company’s employees throughout the world will take part in activities that reflect the tradition and core values of Whirlpool.

"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."

During the past 100 years, Whirlpool Corporation has become a global company, 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 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.
  • 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. 



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