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Whirlpool Q2 N.A. Net, Sales Rise

7/16/2002 01:51:00 PM Eastern

Benton Harbor, Mich. - Robust consumer spending helped Whirlpool North America post an 11 percent sales increase in the second quarter, boosting the net income by 20 percent, compared with the same three months in 2001.

The major appliance maker said it outpaced U.S. major appliance industry unit shipments during the period, as well as increased market share from the previous quarter. Net income for the second quarter hit $63 million over the $53 million recorded in the same three months in 2001. Strong demand for refrigerators and washing machines in North America did much to boost this figure, said the company.

Operating profit at Whirlpool North America jumped 20 percent in the second quarter, mainly due to new product introductions, costs savings from the company's productivity improvement process and restructuring benefits, said the company.

The 'consistent and significant contributions from our North American operations, the improving performance of our European operations and the strength of the company's global brands,' according to David R. Whitwam, chairman/CEO, helped Whirlpool enjoy about a 6 percent increase in overall sales during the second quarter. Revenue reached $2.7 billion in the second three months, compared with $2.6 billion in the year-ago period.

On a pro forma basis, net earnings reached $104 million in the second three months, up from $88 million year over year. These core earnings exclude restructuring charges and accounting changes. During the quarter, Whirlpool recorded restructuring and related charges of $26 million pre-tax.

For the six months, net sales climbed to $5.3 billion, compared with $5.1 billion in the same period in 2001. For the six months, Whirlpool reported a net loss of $465 million, compared with net earnings of $94 million in the first six months of the previous year. On a pro forma basis, the company had net earnings of $196 million, compared with $162 million in the same six months in 2001.

Looking ahead, the majap maker expects overall operating performance to improve over the remainder of the year. Based on current forecasts of global economics and industry conditions, it continues to expect a 10 percent improvement in full-year 2002 pro forma earnings.

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