Graniteville Specialty Fabrics, Graniteville, S.C. — a provider of specialty coatings and custom
coated fabrics for tent, awning, marine, military and other applications — has received a 2013
Manufacturer of the Year Award in the small business category from the South Carolina Chamber of
Commerce. The award recognizes companies that exhibit manufacturing excellence, make a positive
economic impact, are committed to workforce development, and serve as outstanding community
Graniteville Specialty Fabrics was founded in 1845 when William Gregg built the South’s first
cotton mill, which eventually became known as The Graniteville Co. The company established its
Specialty Fabrics Division in 1947, and in 1996, it was purchased by Monroe, Ga.-based textile
manufacturer Avondale Mills Inc. Following a disastrous train derailment in January 2005 outside of
one of its plants in Graniteville, which exacerbated the strain the company already was
experiencing from global competition, Avondale closed its doors
Mills Closes Doors, Sells Some Facilities,”
TextileWorld.com, July/August 2006). The company subsequently sold its
Woodhead Plant in Graniteville — which housed the specialty coating operations — to Woodhead LLC
partners, who brought the company back to life as Graniteville Specialty Fabrics.
Over the past three years, the company reports it has improved quality, delivered profit and
introduced an employee wellness program.
“South Carolina manufacturers were particularly hard hit in a difficult economy — including
Graniteville — so to receive this award is very gratifying,” said Jim Egan, president, Graniteville
Specialty Fabrics. “The award confirms that our commitment to quality, concern for employees and
continuous improvement efforts are on target.”
Graniteville Specialty Fabrics received the award at the Manufacturer of the Year Awards
luncheon held on August 27 in Columbia, S.C.
September 3, 2013