Hotpoint is a brand of domestic appliances. Ownership of the brand is split between American company Whirlpool, which has the rights in Europe,[1] Chinese company Haier, which has the rights in the Americas and Turkish company Arcelik which has rights in Russia and the CIS.

IndustryHome appliances
Founded1911; 113 years ago (1911) in Ontario, California, United States
FounderEarl Richardson
ProductsWashing machines, dishwashers, refrigerators, freezers, cookers, tumble dryers
OwnersAmericas: GE Appliances (Haier)[1]
Europe: Whirlpool (Americas) (Europe) (United Kingdom)

History edit

Pacific Electric Heating Company edit

The company name Hotpoint comes from the hot point of the innovative first electric iron. Invented by American, Earl Richardson (1871–1934) in 1905, he subsequently formed his 'Pacific Electric Heating Company' in Ontario, California, in 1906.[2][3] The device became known as the Hotpoint iron, with its hottest point at the front and not the center.

Hotpoint edit

Hotpoint was founded in 1911 by Earl Richardson.

Hotpoint Electric Heating Company edit

In 1912, the company began making electric irons, and in 1919, electric cookers in the United States. Earl Richardson also invented the first iron that switched off automatically when a maximum temperature was reached.

Hotpoint sign in Great Barrington, Massachusetts

It is claimed to have developed one of the earliest electric toasters in 1908, known as the El Tosto, and later, under GE, the Hotpoint brand name became one of the most popular brands of toasters in the United States in the 1920s and 1930s. Richardson founded his settlement, Adelanto, California, in 1915.

Edison Electric Appliance Company edit

In 1918, the company, known as the 'Hotpoint Electric Heating Company' , merged with the Heating Device Section of General Electric, becoming the 'Edison Electric Appliance Company'.

Hotpoint Electric Appliance Company edit

In 1920, it established a joint venture with competitor General Electric, forming the 'Hotpoint Electric Appliance Company' Limited (HEAC) to market GE (USA) branded goods in the United Kingdom.

Edison General Electric Company edit

In 1927, GE bought the factory and entire company. It became known as the 'Edison General Electric Company' in 1931.

Most Hotpoint production moved to GE's mammoth Appliance Park manufacturing complex in Louisville, Kentucky in the beginning of the 1950s. To this day, many Hotpoint appliances are made at Louisville, and as of 2013 was the largest appliance plant in the world.[4]

GEC edit

In 1929, HEAC joined the Associated Electrical Industries (AEI) group, itself bought by The General Electric Company in 1967. By the 1960s it was the market leader in household electrical appliances in the United Kingdom, followed by Sweden's Electrolux.

GDA edit

Hotpoint continued as a subsidiary of GEC until 1989, when it was merged into a new division of GEC called General Domestic Appliances (GDA). 50% of GDA was purchased by General Electric (USA), with whom it owned the joint venture. In 1998, the Redring and Xpelair brands also joined GDA, and Hotpoint was categorized as part of GDA Applied Energy.

Indesit edit

GEC was restructured into Marconi plc. from which Indesit Company (then called Merloni Elettrodomestici) took over and then Indesit was bought out by Hotpoint on 21 December 2001 for £121m.[5] At this point, Hotpoint employed around 7,000 people at its four sites in the United Kingdom, three of which later closed. Indesit UK has been based at Hotpoint headquarters in Peterborough since 1 June 2003. In 2005, Merloni Elettrodomestici rebranded to become Indesit Company.

At the beginning of 2007, Indesit Company launched the group's new brand architecture, Hotpoint, and combined with Ariston to form the Hotpoint-Ariston brand.

In December 2008, Indesit Company acquired the final quota of shares from General Electric for US$57m.[6] From the end of 2011, Indesit rolled out the Hotpoint brand name across Europe, replacing the names Ariston and Hotpoint Ariston.

Whirlpool edit

In October 2014, Whirlpool paid 56% of the purchased by for UK only marketing whilst Haier bought out 44% for US.[clarify][7] Whirlpool's had a turbulent ownership of Hotpoint and Indesit as in 2015, Indesit Company released a statement announcing a safety alert for certain models of tumble dryers produced between 2004 and 2015 due to a design flaw which caused large particles of lint to escape the fluff filter into the dryer and build up around the heating element bank which posed a risk of fire. In 2016, Whirlpool began sending out engineers to perform safety modifications to the recalled dryers. In July 2019, Whirlpool finally issued a recall for the appliances, stating that up to 800,000 machines would either be replaced or repaired.

In December 2019, Whirlpool announced a safety recall for certain models of Hotpoint and Indesit washing machines manufactured between 2014 and 2018, due to faulty door interlocks that could cause the machines to catch fire.

Haier edit

In September 2014, Electrolux agreed to buy General Electric's household appliances business including the Hotpoint brand in North America for £2bn ($3.3bn). The deal was expected to close in 2015.[8] Due to blockage by U.S. regulators, the Electrolux deal was terminated, and GE subsequently sold its appliance division to Haier of China, to close in 2016.[9]

Arcelik edit

In 2022, Turkish white goods manufacturer Arcelik agreed to buy Whirpool's Russian arm including use of the Hotpoint brand. The deal included Whirlpool's sales operations in Kazakhstan and selected countries in the Commonwealth of Independent States. [10]

In January 2023, Arcelik and Whirpool agreed to combine their European business with Arcelik owning a 75% share. The new entity will own rights to the Hotpoint brand in Europe.[11] In February 2024, Britain's antitrust regulator provisionally cleared the deal. This followed approved by EU antitrust regulators in October 2023.[12]

Products edit

Hotpoint was formed in 1911 in California and entered the British market in 1920. It is well known for its refrigerators and washing machines. The company, including sister brands Creda and Indesit, at one time produced the largest amount of kitchen appliances in the United Kingdom. The headquarters was in Woodston, Peterborough with about 1,500 people based there making fridges and freezers. The refrigeration plant closed in 2008.[13]

Grenfell Tower fire edit

In June 2017, a Hotpoint FF175BP fridge freezer was found to have triggered the Grenfell Tower fire in London that killed 72 people.[14][15] A total of 64,000 units of the same model were manufactured between 2006 and 2009 by Indesit under the Hotpoint brand before moving over to Whirlpool.[16]

Customers who believed they own either the FF175BP or the FF175BG models have been advised to contact the company for further safety checks. According to the Hotpoint website: “We have been made aware that the recent fire at Grenfell Tower in West London may have originated in a Hotpoint branded fridge freezer, manufactured between March 2006 and July 2009, model numbers FF175BP (Polar White) and FF175BG (Graphite)".[17][18][14]

In October 2018, Whirlpool notified customers that they did not find anything that posed a risk to the customers, and that the London Fire Brigade’s investigation into the cause of the fire had found that some electrical cabling behind the fridge freezer, or an incorrectly discarded cigarette on the kitchen window may have started the fire.

Manufacturing sites edit

The former Hotpoint plant in Yate, which makes tumble dryers, is now the only plant in the United Kingdom still in operation. Most machines are now made in Italy and Poland as opposed to the United Kingdom. Hotpoint washing machines were formerly manufactured at a plant in Llandudno Junction, in Conwy County Borough, North Wales, United Kingdom. The site made around 800,000 washing machines in 2007, with about 1,000 employees.[19] It is now the North Wales base of the Senedd.[20]

Their refrigeration products, formerly manufactured at the Peterborough factory, now are made in Poland.[21] It has a distribution centre at Raunds.

Site closures edit

Indesit UK's (former GDA) Creda plant in Blythe Bridge, Stoke-on-Trent closed in December 2007.[22] Closure of the manufacturing facilities at Peterborough followed in the end of 2008.[13] On 31 July 2009, Indesit closed its plant at Kinmel Park, Bodelwyddan Denbighshire, Wales, United Kingdom.

The factory employed 305 workers.[23] The company blamed "continuing decline" in the market.[24]

United States edit

In the United States, Hotpoint branded products are made by GE Consumer & Industrial (appliance business to be acquired by Haier in 2016) at Louisville, Kentucky.

Marketing edit

In 2002, it had a 23% share of the white goods market in the United Kingdom.[5] The Holby City actress Lisa Faulkner starred in their 2010 Campaign for Cooking Confidence.[25]

In 2009, it worked with Kelly Hoppen to produce its interior design Hot Style campaign. The company has also worked in conjunction with the P&G detergent brand Ariel. It currently recommends Ariel. Before 2004, Hotpoint recommended Unilever brands; Persil & Comfort. In the past it has also recommended Glist dishwasher tablets.

Actress Mary Tyler Moore appeared in a series of 1950s television commercials for the company as a character called "Happy Hotpoint", prior to her fame in television comedy series during the next two decades.

References edit

  1. ^ a b Hotpoint customer support
  2. ^ "Earl H. Richardson". Harvard Business School. Retrieved 8 February 2011.
  3. ^ "First Hotpoint iron" (PDF). Streamlined Irons. Retrieved 8 February 2011.
  4. ^ Goldsberry, Clare (24 December 2013). "Appliance manufacturing returns to the U.S." Retrieved 9 August 2023.
  5. ^ a b "Merloni Elettrodomestici completes GDA (Hotpoint) acquisition". Indesit Company. 8 March 2002. Archived from the original on 4 March 2016. Retrieved 9 December 2015.
  6. ^ "Indesit Company acquires final GDA (Hotpoint) quota from General Electric". Indesit Company. 23 December 2008. Retrieved 26 December 2008.
  7. ^ "Whirlpool Completes Purchase of Majority Interest in Hotpoint and Indesit". Whirlpool Corporation. 14 October 2014. Retrieved 1 April 2015.
  8. ^ "Electrolux buys General Electric's appliances unit for $3.3bn". BBC News. 8 September 2014. Retrieved 8 September 2014.
  9. ^ "Haier Buying GE Appliance Unit". USA Today. 15 January 2016. Retrieved 4 March 2016.
  10. ^ "Whirlpool to exit Russia, take $300 mln-$400 mln hit in second quarter". Retrieved 19 February 2024.
  11. ^ "Whirlpool partners Arcelik in Europe, quits MidEast and Africa". Reuters. 17 January 2023. Retrieved 19 February 2024.
  12. ^ "UK competition watchdog clears Arcelik's European deal with Whirlpool". Reuters. 8 February 2024. Retrieved 19 February 2024.
  13. ^ a b "A dark day for staff at the Hotpoint factory". Peterborough Evening Telegraph. 27 November 2008. Retrieved 26 December 2008.
  14. ^ a b Monaghan, Angela (23 June 2017). "Hotpoint tells customers to check fridge-freezers after Grenfell Tower fire". the Guardian.
  15. ^ "Grenfell Tower fire began in fridge-freezer". 23 June 2017 – via
  16. ^ "Hotpoint CHAOS: Firm behind Grenfell Tower fire in SECOND scandal". 23 June 2017.
  17. ^ "Landlords urged to check white goods - RLA Campaigns and News Centre". 27 June 2017.
  18. ^ Monaghan, Angela (27 June 2017). "Grenfell Tower fire: MP says public must be told to stop using Hotpoint model". the Guardian.
  19. ^ "Fears grow over Indesit factory in Wales". ERT Online. 12 February 2009. Archived from the original on 2 December 2015. Retrieved 2 December 2015.
  20. ^ "Final day for 302 Indesit workers". BBC News. 30 July 2009. Retrieved 2 December 2015.
  21. ^ "Indesit lays off 400 and moves production to Poland and Turkey". Evertiq. 21 May 2008. Retrieved 2 December 2015.
  22. ^ "Hundreds of cooker firm jobs lost". BBC News. 7 August 2007. Retrieved 2 December 2015.
  23. ^ "Indesit job losses 'major blow'". BBC News. 4 March 2009. Retrieved 2 December 2015.
  24. ^ "305 jobs to go at Indesit factory". BBC News. 3 March 2009. Retrieved 1 December 2015.
  25. ^ "Hotpoint campaign for Cooking Confidence with Lisa Faulkner". Hotpoint. 5 November 2010. Archived from the original on 20 March 2012. Retrieved 16 January 2015.

External links edit

News items edit

Video clips edit