With appliances, who is making what is often not as clear cut of an answer as one might expect. Many manufacturers are various times buy certain product lines from other manufacturers, rebrand them, tweak the appearance a bit and then sell it as this own. Others don’t actually ‘make’ any of their own units and solely exist to sell other manufacturer brands as their own. Then you have sub-brands that are owned by a primary manufacturer but are sold under a different name by the same company. Sound confusing? It is. Even professionals have a hard time keeping up at times. But, I’ll try to list this out to make this a little simpler for everyone where I can by going through the major current manufacturer names.
Amana(Whirlpool/Goodman Global) – Founded in 1934. Acquired Deepfreezer, Co. in 1956. Sold to Raytheon in 1965. In 1979 Raytheon purhased Speed Queen, leading to Amana beginning to manufacturer laundry care product in 1982 which were made by Speed Queen. In 1997 Amana was purchased by Goodman Global from Raytheon, and then resold the appliance division to Maytag in 2002 where it currently resides. This makes your more current Amana products manufactured by Whirlpool(we’ll get to that in a second). The heater and air conditioner division is still owned by Goodman Global.
Bosch(Bosch) – Started in 1976 as a joint venture between Siemens and Robert Bosch. Today it is Europe’s largest appliance manufacturer and one of the top in the world. Its main brands are Bosch and Siemans. Notable sub-brands include Gagenau, Neff, Thermador, Constructa, Viva, Ufesa, Junkers and Zelmer, of which Thermador is the only real active U.S. sub brand.
Crosley(Electrolux, Crosley, Whirlpool) – Crosley is a bit of a strange brand. It started selling appliances in the 1930’s when Powell Crosley added appliances to his line. Crosley, in fact, was the inventor of refrigerator door shelves and patented it in 1932. This is now a universal design after the patent expired. in 1945 AVCO bought the appliance line and discontinued production in 1956 due to so much competition. The Crosley Corporation of today has nothing to do with the original Crosley as the naming rights were bought by AVCO in 1976. Mostly in North America, Crosley is heavily produced by Electrolux. Their laundry units, however, are made by whirlpool. Though on occassion, Crosley will venture out and try to make their own units. So you’re looking at Crosley being made by Electrolux, Whirlpool and Crosley themselves.
Dacor(Dacor) – Started in 1965 by Stanley Joseph, Dacor is a family owned manufacturer that manufactures it own products.
Danby(Whirlpool) – Danby is one of the brands that seems to exist to just sell other people’s stuff under their name. They’ve sold just about everyone’s products at one point in time or another. Currently, most of their products are made by Amana, which is owned by Whirlpool.
Electrolux(Electrolux) – Electrolux was formed in 1919 as Elektrolux. It was renamed to Electrolux in 1957. It is the world’s second largest appliance manufacturer by units sold. In September of 2014 Electrolux and G.E. came to an agreement for Electrolux to buy G.E.’s appliance division for $3.3 billion. It’s sub brands include: AEG, Frigidaire, Gibson, Kelvinator, Tappan, White-Westinghouse, and now possibly G.E. and G.E. sub-brands.
Frigidaire(Electrolux) – Founded in 1916. Owned by General Motors from 1919-1979. Sold to White Sewing Machine Company in 1979, which was purchased in 1986 by Electrolux.
Fisher & Paykel(Haier) – Founded in 1934, was a importer of appliances for many years(primarily Crosley and Maytag). Produced Kelvinator under license in 1938. In 2001 split to form two separate companies, one for appliances, the other for healthcare products. In 2012 Haier purchased over 90% of F&P stock, making them the majority owner.
General Electric(Electrolux) – G.E. Appliance and Lighting division has been part of G.E. Home and Business Products and G.E. Consumer and Industrial. They manufacture appliances under the G.E. brand, as well as G.E. Monogram, Adora and Hotpoint. In September of 2014, G.E. agreed to sell their appliance division to Electrolux. In the past, some products sold under the G.E. name have been manufactured by LG and Samsung.
Haier(Haier) – A chinese company founded in 1984. Purchased a majority share in Fisher & Paykel in 2012.
Hotpoint(G.E./Electrolux) – Hotpoint was founded in 1911. In 1918 merged with the Heating Device Section of General Electric. In September of 2014, G.E. agreed to sell its appliance division to Electrolux.
Jenn-Air(Whirlpool) – Founded in 1947. Sold to Maytag in 1982. Maytag was acquired by Whirlpool in 2006.
Kenmore(Everyone) – Kenmore is Sears Holdings in-house brand. It is made up of products from nearly every manufacturer in the industry and depending on the year and product the manufacturer has changed. Currently their Elite line of laundry and refrigeration products are LG, while their cooking products are primarily electrolux, their regular line of refrigerators are Frigidaire, their dishwashers are Whirlpool and G.E. You have to have the model number for the Kenmore to even figure out who made it.
L.G.(L.G.) – LG was formed from a merger of Lak-Hui(Lucky) and Goldstar to become Lucky Goldstar. Mostly sold under the Goldstar brand for ages, in 97 to appeal to the western market, rebranded itself as simply LG utilizing the tagline of ‘Life’s Good’. Sells major appliances, TVs, consumer electronics and HVAC products. Sells as LG, Zenith, Hampton Bay, and Gold Star. In the past has made units for G.E., Whirlpool, Panasonic, and Kenmore
Magic Chef(?) – Magic Chef can trace its origins back to the mid 1800’s. Started by a German immigrant, John Ringen and his brothers-in-law as the American Stove. The company started operating under the Magic Chef brand in 1929. Officially became Magic Chef, Inc. in 1951. In 57 was merged with Food Giants Market of California. Was sold in 58 to Dixie Products and in 86 sold to Maytag. In 2006 Maytag was purchased by Whirlpool. However, the Magic Chef name was spun out to CNA International, Inc. and imports and markets products now.
Maytag(Whirlpool) – Founded in 1893. Acquired in 2006 by Whirlpool. Brands Maytag owned and sold under included: Admiral, Amana, Caloric, Jenn-Air and Magic Chef
Miele(Miele) – Founded in 1899, it is a German company that is still family owned to this day.
Samsung Electronics(Samsung) – Samsung Electronics is the flagship subsidiary of the Samsung Group out of South Korea. Started in 1969. Is the largest manufacturer of LCD screens in the world. Manufactures a large variety of products including most home appliances, TVs, cell phones, computers, tablets, cameras and a plethora of other things.
Whirlpool(Whirlpool) – Started in 1911 as the Upton Machine company. In 1929 merged with the Nineteen Hundred Washer Company and became the Nineteen Hundred Corporation. In 1949 Sears began selling their products under their Sears brand. In 1950 became the Whirlpool Corporation. In 1955 acquired the Seeger Refrigeration company and RCA’s refrigeration and cooking lines, including their Estate brand. In 1986 acquired KitchenAid. In 1989 acquired Roper. In 2006 acquired Maytag, which included Maytag, Admiral, Amana, Caloric, Jenn-Air, Magic Chef, Jade, Hoover and Dixie-Narco. Dixie-Narco sold to Crane Co, Amana Commercial sold to AGA. In 2007 Hoover sold to Techtronic Industries and Jade Appliances to Middleby Corporation. Major brands: Whirlpool, Maytag. Sub-brands of note: Admiral, Amana, Estate, Hotpoint, Jenn-Air, KitchenAid, Roper. Random fact: Freeze dried ice cream was developed by Whirlpool for NASA.