By Lisa Johnston
New products on display at the American International Toy Fair, held in N
Electrolux has reorganized its white-goods management structure in response to increased global competition and rising raw materials costs.
Under the new plan, the company's international majap strategy will be guided by a four-man white-goods leadership team comprised of Electrolux's president/CEO Hans Straberg; Keith McLoughlin, president/CEO of Electrolux Home Products North America; Johan Bygge, who heads white goods in Asia and Africa; and former chief administrative officer Fredrik Rystedt, who was promoted to chief financial officer.
In addition, McLoughlin was given added responsibility for Latin America, a market previously managed by Bygge, while Bygge assumed additional responsibility for European operations — the company's largest unit — following the departure of Wolfgang Konig, who is pursuing other opportunities.
The changes became effective this month.
“With the new global leadership team for white goods, we will better benefit from our leading global position,” Straberg explained. “We will speed up our efforts to save costs, address underperformers and produce an even stronger offering to the different needs of the retail trade and the consumer in countries all over the world.”
Electrolux, like many of its majap peers, has come under increased sales and earnings pressure from Asian competitors and the rising cost of hot-rolled steel sheet and oil. Indeed, the company's third-quarter sales of core appliances in the United States and Canada slipped 4.3 percent to $1.1 billion from $1.2 billion during the year-ago period, while operating income was substantially lower, dropping 46.2 percent to $23.6 million from $43.9 million in the same three months a year earlier.
Besides reorganizing its top management tier, the company has been closing facilities in the United States and western Europe and moving production to lower-cost countries in eastern Europe and Asia to help contain costs.
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