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Knitting / Apparel

Gerber Businesses Exceeding Expectations

Gerber Technology, Tolland, Conn., recently announced it has generated more than $15 million during fiscal 1999 from sales and service-related business to Mexico, a figure that surpassed the companys initial forecasts by almost 40 percent.During the past year, business to and within Mexico has grown faster than even our most optimistic predictions due to a couple of factors, said James Arthurs, vice president of Gerbers international division.The expansion of American manufacturing companies into Mexico escalated last year after an initial delay following the implementation of NAFTA. Many major U.S. companies, among them Tarrant, Wrangler and Warnaco, suddenly made the move and have since realized the benefits, he added. Moreover, several existing Mexican manufacturers such as Illusion, Lartel and Confitalia have expanded their operations considerably. Finally, even more notable, many local apparel companies have emerged and are prospering as a result of the countrys boom.The international division of Gerber surpassed $500 million in cumulative system sales to customers and distributors during the first half of 1999.According to the company, in retail terms this figure actually totals more than $650 million, which is including distributor mark-ups, local installation revenues, training, extended warranties and sales of personal computers and system furniture.

September 1999