WEST CHESTER, PA— Lasko Products is making a major statement in home environment products this fall, launching a new line of made-in-the-USA Cyclonic Digital Ceramic Heaters as well as debuting an expanded selection of consumer air purifiers.
“We want to be known as the brand that provides a more comfortable and healthy home environment,” Ed Vlacich, CEO of Lasko, told HOMEWORLD BUSINESS®. “We’re very excited about expanding our product portfolio. What we have learned during the pandemic, as an essential business, is that we need to be there for our customers and our consumers when they need us, with the products that they need at that time.”
He added, “For example, with consumers now staying and working at home, they are using more rooms, and therefore they have a greater need for supplemental heating and cooling. Our retail partners have experienced strong demand for portable cooling throughout the past six months, and now, they are experiencing strong demand for supplemental heating.”
Lasko can respond quickly to increases in demand due to the company’s three domestic facilities, totaling some 2.5 million square feet of manufacturing and warehousing space.
“The benefit to domestic manufacturing is that it allows us to respond to sudden changes in demand, often due to sudden changes in the weather,” Vlacich noted. “Most manufacturers who are doing business overseas face a three-to-four month lead time; our domestic manufacturing gives us a strong marketplace advantage.”
Vlacich noted that major weather events, such as hurricanes in the South and East and wildfires in the Western states, typically cause sharp spikes in demand, and Lasko’s domestic facilities position the company to react quickly with the appropriate products.
“U.S. production substantially decreases the lead time from factory floor to retailer to consumer cart, an invaluable asset in a weather-driven business,” he said.
While all of Lasko’s fans are produced domestically, the new Cyclonic digital heaters represent the first time in decades that the company has made heaters in the U.S.
“When motors left the U.S., as an industry, heaters left the U.S.,” Vlacich noted. “Now, we’ve brought heaters back.”
Consumer sentiment towards made in the U.S. is on the rise, but Vlacich pointed out that domestic products must be competitively priced to succeed.
“We are hitting the sweet spot throughout our product line, which combines efficacy, quality and price point,” he said, pointing out that the new cyclonic heaters represent just the beginning of the company’s planned heater offerings and feature a range of industry-leading high-tech features.
Specifically, the CC24920 heater model offers what is said to be the first touch-sensitive digital controls in the industry, along with an easy-to-clean filter. The CC24910 heater model features a multi-function remote control. Additional features on both units include an adjustable thermostat; eight-hour auto-off timer, and two quiet heat settings. Both units deliver 1,500 watts of warmth, are sold fully assembled with an easy-carry handle, and come with a three-year limited warranty.
The Cyclonic heaters are specifically designed to heat larger rooms more efficiently, pulling cooler air in through the bottom of the unit and distributing heat further into the room from the top. The slim and space-saving design allows the unit to be placed against the wall in any room. The CC24920 is available exclusively at Walmart for $77.93 and the CC24910 is available at Home Depot for $99.97.
Sharp increases in consumer health and wellness concerns are spurring Lasko’s renewed emphasis on air purifiers, and the company is debuting two collections this fall.
“Consumers are paying a lot more attention to air quality, and they are much more aware of how air purification can help them achieve a healthier home environment,” Vlacich said.
Lasko is offering three higher-end models and a more entry-level unit. The higher-end models will retail from $60 to $120 and remove the most common indoor air pollutants, including viruses, smoke, odors, volatile organic compounds (VOCs), pet dander, pollen, dust and mold.
The more entry-level air purifier line will retail from $40 to $50, and feature a two-in-one fan and air filter configuration.
“We want to open the market up to consumers who want to improve their indoor air quality, but can’t afford a higher-end model,” Vlacich said. “This is also a great unit for a workout room, garage or workshop area.”
Vlacich said the expanded product line fits in well with Lasko’s overall approach to the market.
“We have three main strategic goals,” he explained. “First, to be recognized as a ‘best in class’ contemporary industrial company by our customers, consumers, employees and shareholders. Second, to grow our top-line sales and expand in the home environment category by looking for strategic adjacencies, and third, to build profitability and increase shareholder value.”
“The combination of an expanded product line and increased domestic production will help us meet those goals, while at the same time, bringing more jobs to our economy,” he said. “Our focus is all about meeting demand and being there for the consumer. Our retail customers know they can rely on us, and consumers know they can rely on us— they will always find a Lasko product when they need it.”