Sears will begin selling its Kenmore line of major appliances on Amazon, marking the first time Kenmore major appliances are sold by another retailer.
The full line of Kenmore Elite, Kenmore Pro and Kenmore Smart majaps will be available on Amazon, as will Sears Home Services and Innovel Solutions delivery, installation and extended product protection. Sears will begin shipping a select assortment of Kenmore appliances next week in the Los Angeles market as an operational test, Tom Park, president of Kenmore, Craftsman and DieHard brands at Sears Holdings, told TWICE. It will roll out to the rest of the country “as soon as possible.”
Park said Sears made the deal in order to expand its brand distribution and omnichannel retail strategy. “This is an opportunity to broaden reach of the brand and expose it to new consumers,” he said, describing the deal as “complementary to our retailer operations.”
The deal also provides Amazon with a high-profile entrée into major appliances, a category which has so far eluded the e-tailer save for third-party sales.
As perhaps a prelude to this announcement, Sears announced last month that its Kenmore Smart appliances would feature Amazon Alexa compatibility. The Kenmore Smart connected room ACs are the first products to feature voice control, and consumers can raise and lower temperatures using the Kenmore Smart skill.
All Kenmore Smart products will feature Alexa.
Sears, which is the No. 3 majap retailer in the U.S., according to TWICE’s 2017 report, has spent the last year exploring alternatives for its private Kenmore, Craftsman and DieHard brands. In February, it licensed the Kenmore brand to Permasteel, a manufacturer of gas grills.
Amazon, meanwhile, was No. 14 on the TWICE ranking, with $228 million in major appliance sales in 2016.
When asked if we should expect to see the Kenmore brand in additional retailers, Park said only that Sears was focused on its Amazon business at the moment.