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Unifi Partners With Yizheng Moves Texturing Operations

Unifi Asia Holdings, a subsidiary of Greensboro, N.C.-based Unifi Inc., and Sinopec Yizheng Chemical Fiber Co. Ltd., China, have formed Yihua Unifi Fibre Industry Co. Ltd. a 50/50 joint venture to manufacture, process and market higher-margin specialty polyester filament yarn in Yizheng's Plant 5 in Jiangsu Province, China, for the Chinese market. Unifi will invest an estimated $30 million to be funded by proceeds from the sale of assets from its European operations in the joint venture.

In other news, Unifi announced it will relocate the yarn texturing operations at its plant in Reidsville, N.C., to its Yadkinville, N.C., facilities, which it says are larger and more efficient. The move, expected to be complete by Oct. 1, 2005, will eliminate approximately 150 jobs in Reidsville and add approximately 100 jobs in Yadkinville.

"This move does not represent a reduction in the domestic polyester texturing capacity for Unifi, nor does it change our ongoing commitment to the dyed yarn operations that continue to be based in the Reidsville plant," said Bill Lowe, chief operating officer and chief financial officer.

July/August 2005