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Gildan Completes CanAm Acquisition

Gildan Activewear Inc., Montreal, has finalized the acquisition of CanAm Yarns LLC — its 50-percent-owned yarn-spinning joint venture with Frontier Spinning Mills Inc., Sanford, N.C. — and is investing approximately $85 million to expand CanAm's yarn-spinning operations.

CanAm was established in 2003 to supply yarn to Gildan for use in knitted apparel. Gildan plans to expand and modernize CanAm's existing open-end yarn-spinning facilities, which are located in Clarkton, N.C., and Cedartown, Ga., and employ approximately 230 people.

Through CanAm, Gildan also will open a ring-spinning plant in Salisbury, N.C., and will hire approximately 170 employees, with production expected to begin in 2014. That project is funded in part by a North Carolina Job Development Investment Grant.

In addition to its U.S. yarn-spinning facilities, Gildan operates 15 sewing, textile manufacturing and sock manufacturing facilities in Honduras, Nicaragua, and the Dominican Republic. The Salisbury plant will allow Gildan to take advantage of the Central America-Dominican Republic Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA-DR).

According to a statement from Gildan, "the strategic rationale for the company's investment in vertically-integrated yarn-spinning is to support its projected sales growth and to continue to pursue its business model of investing in global low-cost manufacturing technology and in product technology which will provide consistent superior product quality. The company is investing in ring-spun yarn technology which will provide enhanced quality features as well as qualify for duty-free access to U.S. markets under CAFTA-DR, which requires the use of U.S. yarn or yarn spun in other CAFTA-DR member countries. Ring-spun products will be utilized as part of the company's branded product offering in Branded Apparel."

Gildan has secured new branded programs for fiscal 2013 and has launched the first national marketing campaign to support its retail brand.

"Quality products plus smart, targeted marketing are helping to define this brand as we greatly expand our presence at retail," said Rob Packard, vice president of marketing and merchandising, Gildan's retail unit.

January/February 2013