The smell about Sunbeam (longish but worth it...)
Also posted to r.f.equipment
Some Sunbeam branded products are not (1) made, (2) distributed, nor
(3) supported by Sunbeam (AKA Jarden Consumer etc.). Sunbeam compact
refrigerators (apparently sold *only* by and through Circuit City) are
made in China by companies unknown (compare Haier series), but
*distributed* by HLC Appliances, AKA Petters Worldwide and other
companies with similar names, all part of the Petters Group) , which
company is now in a world of hurt.
AFAIK from AP and other sources, the following seem to be true:
Sunbeam licensed its logo to Petters (and others) to sell products.
"In the expectation that they would adhere to the same high standards,
yada yada yada."
One of these companies, Petters Worldwide (google search OK here)
holds a small company called HLO Appliances, which manufactures(?) and
distributes and warrantees these products. All defunct.
Petters has been blown to the feds and some current and former execs
have already agreed to guilty pleas on a variety of charges. Think
fraud here, and money laundering, OOJ, wire fraud, and so on. Fed
Tom Petters, Founder and the CEO, resigned in late September, AIR.
Then he was arrested. Maybe Oct 3. The resignation was after a
surprise FBI raid and seizure of records, as I get it. He has been
confined in Illinois w/o bail pending trial, even though Petters is
headquartered in Minnetonka Minnesota. Petters' assets have been
frozen, per AP (go Drudge archive)
Petters' holding Sun Country Airlines has gone Ch. 11.
Jarden/Sunbeam says they are trying to contact the "manufacturer" of
the refrigerators (presumably over disconnected telephone lines, and
BTW the Petters website is down) to work out a resolution to the
problem. They admit to no responsibility for problems relating to
these Sunbeam products because they don't *own* them. (BTW: see also
Sunbeam Watercoolers, which they don't *own* either).
Buy Sunbeam at your own risk. I bought one, it is not good. Can't
reach Petters or HLC. Phones down, website dead, emails bounce or go
unanswered. Sunbeam? "Oh, I apologize, but that's not one of our
Circuit City? Perhaps the only retail seller of these items? "It's out
of my hands, but maybe if I partner with my manager we can determine
what can be done.... " This from their Corporate offices.
FWIW: This model, 4.5 cu ft, seems to be quite similar to the Haier
4.6, AKA Kenmore. FWIW2: I bought a replacement (sob) from Circuit
City under the Haier logo. Circuit City then, after delivery, informs
me they (Surprise!) have now discontinued Haier refrigerators. I
guess I got the last one. Oh, Yeah... they still sell Sunbeams...
Caveat emptor, foodies! Buy good stuff from reliable firms.