1859 to early 1900’s
Whirlpool Canada Inc. (formerly Inglis Limited) has a proud heritage in Canada dating back to 1859. Founded by John Inglis in Guelph, Ontario, the company first manufactured machines for grist and flour mills. In 1881, operating under the name John Inglis and Sons, the company moved to facilities on Strachan Avenue in Toronto, Ontario. In 1898, following the death of John Inglis, his son William assumed leadership of the business.
1935 to 1950
In 1935 the new Toronto Island Ferry was named after William Inglis in appreciation of his significant contribution to the city’s industrial and cultural progress. Two years later, Major J.E. Hahn purchased the company, obtained the right to use the name John Inglis Co. Limited and made significant changes to the company’s operations.
Under Major Hahn’s leadership, the company assisted in the World War II effort by manufacturing guns for the Canadian and British governments. More than 17,800 people were employed at this time creating the need for expansion at the Strachan Avenue plant.
When the war ended in 1946, the company began to manufacture consumer products such as fishing tackle, house trailers, oil burner pumps and domestic heaters and stoves. In the same year, John Inglis Co. Limited negotiated with Nineteen Hundred Corporation (later Whirlpool Corporation) to manufacture home laundry products. The wringer washer was introduced in 1946, and in 1950, production of the automatic washer was added.
1960’s to 1970’s
By 1966, Inglis had become the leading producer of domestic laundry appliances in Canada. The company’s strength in other consumer product categories was also evident.
In 1972, Inglis produced its one-millionth automatic washer and began manufacturing and selling appliances under the Whirlpool brand name. In 1973, the company began operating under Inglis Limited. During the late 1970s, Inglis Limited continued to grow by building a new warehouse and sales and service facility in Laval, Quebec; expanding its automatic washer manufacturing facility in Toronto.
1980’s to 1990’s
In 1981, the company moved its head office from Toronto to Mississauga, Ontario. One year later it acquired certain assets of Canadian Admiral Corporation, Ltd, and began manufacturing and selling under the brand name Admiral. Whirlpool Corporation increased its ownership in Inglis Limited to 71.6 percent in 1987.
Inglis introduced several new products during the late ’80s. In 1985, the microwave oven was launched; in 1986 production of dishwashers began under the newly acquired brand name KitchenAid; and in 1987 a line of energy efficient refrigerators was introduced. The KitchenAid line of small appliances was expanded through the late ’80s and 1990s to include the legendary stand mixer, blender, food processor, hand mixer, toaster and professional quality cookware.
2000 to Present
This last decade and our current so far has been exciting for Whirlpool Canada and its employees. Whirlpool Corporation acquired Maytag Corporation in 2006, increasing their portfolio of excellent brands, to include Whirlpool, Maytag, KitchenAid, Jenn-Air, Amana, Inglis, Roper, and Estate. Exciting times for sure!
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