The Power Equipment business which includes power tools, outdoor products, and accessories, delivered US$1.3 billion in sales, 11.3% higher than the first half of 2010. The business accounted for 72.6% of sales.
Milwaukee recorded double-digit sales growth, significantly outperforming the market through new cordless lithium ion product introductions and intensive end-user marketing initiatives. Our focused delivery of innovative trade specific applications to professional users through the MILWAUKEE® M12™ and M18™ cordless lithium ion systems continues to drive gains globally. The introduction of Milwaukee’s latest generation of lithium ion technology, RED LITHIUM™, was extremely well received by the industry. Successful entry into the Hand Tools market gained traction and underscores the opportunities for further expansion. MILWAUKEE® Power Tool Accessories delivered double-digit growth as the launch of SHOCKWAVE™ drilling and fastening accessories, and new wood SAWZALL® blades with NAIL GUARD™ technology boosted sales.
Consumer, Trade and Professional
All key regions achieved sales growth. A strong flow of new products contributed to further expansion of the leading RYOBI® and AEG® product platforms. The North American growth was driven by the continuing flow of innovative cordless products which deliver great value for the end-users. The JobMax™ Multi-tool system and core product expansions of the highly successful RYOBI® 18 volt ONE+ System® were key contributors. Comprehensive cost improvement programs across our operations and product lines had a positive impact during the period.
In Europe and Australia, the launch of the innovative new RYOBI® hyper-green products and key customer additions in the first half delivered strong growth. Our ability to offer products that satisfy a wide range of customer needs and price points, supported by dedicated marketing programs, is driving our aggressive expansion outside of North America.
Outdoor Products & Accessories
In North America, our innovation in cordless lithium ion outdoor products helped TTI outperform an industry which was impacted by poor weather. Strong adoption of RYOBI® 18 volt ONE+ System®, the introduction of a 24 volt cordless lithium ion platform, as well as further expansion of trimmer attachments, HOMELITE® electric handheld products, and accessories all drove sales gains.
Our European business benefited from the introduction of a full range of RYOBI® 36 volt lithium ion products, further establishing TTI as a leader in cordless innovation. In Australia, sales grew double-digit as we captured market share in both core and new categories. The RYOBI® 18 volt ONE+ System® lithium ion outdoor products and the new RYOBI® 25.4cc petrol products were strong performers.
The Floor Care business reported a 10.4% sales increase over the prior year first half to US$489 million, accounting for 27.4% of total TTI sales.
In North America further market share gains by our iconic HOOVER® brand and new product introductions under DIRT DEVIL® contributed to solid sales growth. Sales drivers were the HOOVER® WindTunnel® T-Series™ Upright vacuum line and MaxExtract® carpet washers featuring patented Spin Scrub® cleaning. The DIRT DEVIL® brand expanded its product line with its GATOR® Hand Vac Series and canister vacuums and successfully diversified into the outdoor cleaning category with a unique line of electric pressure washers supported by cleaning solutions and accessories.
Europe delivered strong sales growth, primarily driven by the VAX® brand and regional penetration gains. VAX® launched new multi-cyclonic lightweight vacuum cleaners under the Mach Air® series, ultra quiet multi-cyclonic canisters under the Mach Zen® series, and delivered strong growth in carpet cleaners that increased market share.