Doug Widenmann and Michael Moriarity at the Daikin national sales conference
Doug Widenmann, senior vice president of sales, Daikin AC (Americas) Inc., confers with Michael Moriarity, HVAC manager, United Refrigeration, during the Daikin national sales conference.
LAS VEGAS — Daikin AC (Americas) Inc. president Akinori “Andy” Atarashi shared annual sales results with 135-plus distributors and guests at the National Distributor Conference in Las Vegas.

According to Atarashi, global sales in 2011 totaled $15.2 billion, and the recent purchase of Goodman Mfg. established Daikin as one of the largest HVACR manufacturers in the world. He also said North America sales were up significantly and Daikin continues to strive to hit its goal of $500 million in sales by 2015.

Doug Widenmann, senior vice president of sales, presented statistics on the significant growth of the ductless market during a period when the unitary market was in decline. The residential market has grown 260 percent since 2005 and the commercial multi-split market increased by 360 percent, with projections of a 1 million unit market by 2015, said Widenmann. Widenmann challenged the audience to think differently about the HVACR market when he said, “We need to continue to grow our business and ductless products, we need to change some minds, and we need to start doing that now.”

Widenmann further pointed out opportunities in the multifamily market, where 15 million units were built before 1990. With the challenges of retrofitting compact heating and air conditioning systems, ductless products are a viable and cost-effective alternative for the 1.5 million units that will require retrofitting each year, he said.

Distributors also had the opportunity to learn about new products including the Daikin ENVI thermostat, which enables customers to remotely access their systems from an iPhone, iPad, or Android device. Several new programs were introduced in special breakout sessions including a learning management system, online training programs, dealer websites, extended warranty options, and a mobile inventory app for use with all smart phones and Wi-Fi enabled tablet devices.

Dave Lucas, vice president, distribution sales, summed up the three-day event, saying, “This is no longer a niche market.”

Publication date: 11/5/2012