For weeks, rumors have swirled about the possible sale of GE Appliances. Today, a potential buyer has emerged.
AB Electrolux, the Swedish parent company of the U.S. brands Electrolux and Frigidaire, announced that it is "in discussions regarding a possible acquisition of the appliances business of GE."
According to Electrolux, "No agreement has been reached, and there can be no assurances that an agreement will be reached. Any further announcements will be made in due course."
Bloomberg reports that there is one other interested party. Quirky, the smart home manufacturer who has already partnered with GE to bring new products to market, is reportedly part of a private equity–backed bid.
GE spokesperson Julie Wood told Reviewed.com that "GE is reviewing strategic options for GE Appliances and is in talks with Electrolux and other parties."
Wood said there is no deal to announce at this time, but any information would be shared first with "employees, customers and the communities in which we operate." She also promised that GE Appliances would "stand behind our brand" by delivering new products, honoring warranties, and providing factory service.
Through a spokesperson, Electrolux declined additional comment beyond the company's press release.
If a sale does occur, it could mean major changes in the appliance landscape, and represent the largest industry consolidation in the U.S. since Whirlpool Corporation acquired Maytag back in 2005.
Both Electrolux and GE have recently made major investments in new factories—Electrolux debuted a new oven factory in Memphis, and GE completely revamped its storied Appliance Park facility outside of Louisville, KY. The two companies have some of the best-known brands in the industry, and both claim significant market share.