Whirlpool Takes Q4 Hit; President/COO Departs

CEO Marc Bitzer to oversee global operations

By Alan Wolf, YSN

Softened consumer demand compounded by a one-off supply-chain glitch took a toll on Whirlpool’s fourth-quarter and full-year financial results.

The company reported a $1.6 billion loss for the three months ended Dec. 31, 2022, as sales slid 15.3% to $4.9 billion. In North America, where the supply-chain disruption arose, net sales slipped 13.6% to $2.8 billion and earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT) fell 67.1%, to $166 million.

For the full year, net sales declined 10.3% to $19.7 billion on a loss of $1.5 billion.

Joseph Liotine

Concurrent with its earnings release, Whirlpool announced the impending departure of President/COO Joseph T. Liotine. The onetime head of U.S. and North American operations assumed his current post 2021, with responsibility for all global operations. Assuming those duties is Chairman/CEO Marc Bitzer, who inherits a significantly smaller portfolio following the company’s divestiture of its European, Middle Eastern and African operations.

See: Whirlpool Shifts Offshore Operations to Arçelik

As part of the transition, Liotine will serve in an advisory role through March 31.

Looking ahead, Bitzer said increased consumer demand by the back-half of 2023, plus a new cost structure designed to shave upwards of $900 million in overhead, will leave Whirlpool “well positioned” to deliver sold results this year. 

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