That operation, started in 1907, is currently the leading supplier of appliances in new housing construction. But in the current real estate downturn, that's not good enough, and Whirlpool
GE is looking for as much as $8 billion in an auction run by Goldman Sachs
There really aren't any credible domestic bidders, aside from hedge funds and other pure investment firms, and I'd be surprised if the unit were sold off piecemeal. In short, we're looking at a real possibility of moving this American institution abroad.
Now, GE is sitting on a $15.3 billion cash hoard, so what difference will a few billion more make? I don't see this as a major growth move for GE, but it is a strong statement of the company's willingness to make drastic decisions as it navigates the swirls and eddies of business. That strong stance is worthy of Foolish respect all by itself.