American Manufacturing Makes the Cut

WAHL® PROVING AMERICAN MANUFACTURING STILL MAKES THE CUT
-- Illinois-based manufacturer of hair clippers and trimmers adds jobs, expands production--

STERLING, ILL. (March 12, 2013)
– Wahl, a leading manufacturer of grooming and personal care products worldwide, is proving that American manufacturing can and does work. The nearly 100-year-old, family-owned company recently completed a 124,000-square-foot expansion to its Sterling, Ill. manufacturing facility and increased its domestic workforce by      10 percent. Wahl currently employs more than 800 American workers.

The recent plant expansion is Wahl’s second largest ever, which the company attributes to continued sales growth. The additional space allows the company to meet increasing production and workforce needs while furthering its commitment to its U.S. manufacturing operations.  

“Our dedication to expanding domestic operations and growing our American workforce is a direct result of our employees and their contributions,” said Steve Yde, director of marketing for Wahl Clipper Corporation. “We may be a global company, but we’re also a family-owned business that hasn’t lost sight of what got us here. We believe manufacturing in the U.S. gives us a real advantage and is essential to our continued growth.”

Wahl’s dedication to quality and service is a big reason why its U.S. manufacturing operation is alive and well. According to Yde, 70 percent of Wahl’s hair clippers—a product that defines the brand to this day and represents the lion’s shares of its worldwide sales—are still manufactured in Sterling, Ill. Furthermore, Wahl receives excellent customer-service ratings year after year and maintains that all customer service calls are answered by a person rather than an automated system.

For Wahl, investing in its U.S. operations goes further than quality control. The company’s strategy has long been to innovate at home—that is to develop core technologies domestically that not only keeps its American workforce working, but producing products that demand precision. This approach began with the company’s proprietary blade design nine decades ago, which the company continues to manufacture domestically for every hair clipper, facial hair trimmer and pet clipper it sells.  

Today, Wahl’s innovate-at-home approach is responsible for the Lithium Ion Trimmer and Lithium Ion Clipper becoming among the most successful product launches in the company’s history. In 2009, Wahl developed the world’s first Lithium Ion powered facial hair trimmer, which became a top-selling facial hair trimmer on the market almost overnight. This technology is now a centerpiece of a family of grooming tools that offer three times the run time and twice the power of standard rechargeable options. The newest member of the family, the Lithium Ion Beard & Stubble Trimmer, launches at retail this spring.  

Wahl’s commitment to American manufacturing is especially timely, given the rising cost of labor overseas and the continued interest among consumers and retailers alike. A recent study conducted by Boston Consulting Group revealed that 80 percent of Americans would pay a premium for products made in America. This pro-American-made sentiment has led major retailers to commit to stocking more American-made products.

“We’re excited to see the rededication from consumers and retailers for products made in America,” said Yde. “It’s a testament to the quality of U.S. manufacturing. Wahl is living proof that it can be done and that it can be sustainable.”

For more information on Wahl’s commitment to American manufacturing and recent innovations, visit www.wahl.com.

About WAHL
Now in its 94th year, Wahl Clipper Corporation is an international industry leader in the manufacturing of products for the professional beauty and barber salon trade, consumer personal care and animal grooming.  Headquartered in Sterling, Ill., Wahl currently employs some 2,000 people worldwide in Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, England, Germany, Holland, Hungary, Japan, New Zealand, Russia, South Africa, Spain and the United States.  Wahl products are available in 165 countries around the world.  For more about Wahl, please visit www.wahl.com.



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