Thursday, September 2, 2010

Whirlpool spends $120 M to expand plant in Cleveland, not Mexico

Whirlpool Corp. plans a $120 million project in Cleveland, Tenn., to build a 1 million square-foot manufacturing plant to make built-in cooking ranges and ovens, the company announced today.
A 400,000 square-foot distribution center is also planned. Construction is expected to begin later this year.

The company will add about 130 news jobs, mostly at the distribution center, to an existing work force of 1,500. Phased-in production is expected in the second half of 2011.

The new plant is the centerpiece of some $440 million in upgrades of domestic manufacturing facilities as the company shifts away from low-cost overseas locales in favor of domestic operations.

Whirlpool had considered sites in Mexico and elsewhere in the United States before deciding to replace an existing 100-year-old factory in Cleveland, according to the Wall Street Journal. The new plant will be located less than seven miles from the existing plant and warehouse.

“We appreciate their recognition that the business climate we’ve created in Tennessee and our skilled workforce have a role to play in the company’s future,” said Matt Kisber, Tennessee’s commissioner of Economic and Community Development.

Whirlpool employs more manufacturing workers than any appliance maker selling products in the United States, the company said.

The company had annual sales of $17 billion last year. The company markets Whirlpool, Maytag, KitchenAid, Jenn-Air, Amana, Brastemp, Consul, Bauknecht and other major brand names.

Contact Bonna Johnson at 615-726-5990 or

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