Benton Harbor, Mich. — Whirlpool said higher revenues and greater cost efficiencies contributed to record profits in the third quarter.
Net income increased 17.3 percent to $230 million for the three months, ended Sept. 30, while net sales edged up 3 percent to $4.8 billion, and rose 4 percent excluding the impact of foreign currency rates and Brazilian tax credits.
In North America, net sales rose 6.3 percent to $2.8 billion (7 percent excluding currency impact), and operating profit hit a third-quarter record of $304 million, or about 11 percent of sales, driven by “ongoing cost productivity and higher unit volumes.” Those factors helped offset higher material costs and the impact of product-line transitions, ostensibly to meet new, stricter Department of Energy efficiency requirements.
Chairman/CEO Jeff Fettig attributed the quarterly results to “disciplined management of our operations” and continued investment in brands and innovation. He also cited the recent acquisitions of Italian and Chinese majap makers Indesit and Hefei Sanyo, which demonstrate the company’s commitment to “creating significant value for our shareholders by integrating our technology leadership and broad offering of products to benefit consumers around the globe.”
During the quarter, Whirlpool introduced the Whirlpool-branded Cabrio top-load laundry pair with intuitive touch controls; the KitchenAid Ultra-Fine Filter dishwasher featuring micro-filtration to remove food particles from water; and Whirlpool-branded HybridCare clothes dryer with hybrid heat-pump technology that regenerates energy during the drying cycle to reduce energy consumption.
The company also introduced a portable Swash clothing care system that freshens clothes and removes wrinkles, and extended its slide-in series of premium Whirlpool-branded front-control ranges.
Looking ahead, Whirlpool projected full-year industry shipments to rise 5 percent in the U.S.