Whirlpool leaves Russia, costing Michigan company up to $400 million

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BENTON HARBOUR, MI — Whirlpool, an appliance maker headquartered in Benton Harbor, plans to sell its Russian operations.

The agreement with Istanbul-based household appliance company Arçelik A.Ş. includes Whirlpool’s manufacturing site in Lipetsk, Russia, the commercial organization in Moscow and commercial operations in Kazakhstan and other Eastern European countries.

“The company is taking this step given the current operating environment in Russia and has concluded that the agreement is the best course of action for its employees, shareholders and overall business,” Whirlpool said in a statement. tuesday.

Under the purchase agreement, Arçelik will make deferred payments for 10 years capped at the estimated present value of 220 million euros, or approximately $231 million, of the company’s value.

Whirlpool expects to lose between $300 million and $400 million in the second quarter from the sale, according to a June 27 filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

Related: Four Michigan companies join exodus by pulling out of Russia while others stay

The sale is expected to be completed in the third quarter of 2022 following regulatory approvals and other conditions. At this point, Whirlpool will no longer have manufacturing operations in Russia.

Big companies like McDonald’s, Starbucks, Shell and Heineken have also left Russia altogether since the war in Ukraine began in February.

More than 1,000 companies, including some from Michigan, have at least suspended operations in Russia.

Whirlpool limited its Russian production to provide only “essential goods” to families who needed their products to “clean, cook and provide adequate storage of food and medicine in their homes”, the giant said. appliances in a March press release.

Ford Motor Company suspended operations in Russia while General Motors halted operations with Russia. Amway, a global multi-level marketing company in health, beauty and home care, has suspended product imports. And Little Caesars pizza froze newly opened franchises.

Meanwhile, Kalamazoo-based Stryker continued to sell to and import into Russia, according to researchers at Yale University.

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