Milliken Acquires Westex

Spartanburg-based textile and chemical manufacturer Milliken & Company has acquired Westex Inc., a Chicago-based manufacturer of flame-resistant (FR) fabrics for industrial applications. The acquisition will bring together Milliken’s strong presence in the specialty fabrics market with Westex’s high level of expertise in the global FR fabric industry.
Westex was established in 1919 and first began manufacturing FR fabrics during World War II for the U.S. military on a commission basis. The company launched a research and development program in 1987 that resulted in the creation of its Indura® fabric, which was the first 100-percent cotton FR fabric, Westex reports. The fabric provides multipurpose protection from electric arc flash, flash fire, molten ferrous metal and welding exposures for the life of the garment. Westex’s other FR brands include UltraSoft®, UltraSoft AC®, TrueComfort™, Moda-Quilt® and Vinex®.
“We look forward to welcoming the Westex team to Milliken & Company,” said Jeff Price, president, specialty fabrics division, Milliken & Company. “As we look to the future, we are committed to changing the experience for industrial workers with FR innovations that further improve comfort and productivity.”
Westex’s manufacturing facility, located in Sylvania, Ga., will remain open.
“All of us at Westex look forward to joining a strong, values-based company with a long heritage of innovation,” said Mike Enright, vice president of sales and marketing, Westex. “Westex has a proven track record of developing FR technology, products, and strong end-user relationships that help customers develop successful programs. By combining our collective R&D talent, deep customer knowledge, and market access, we will strengthen our capabilities and offer workers the highest levels of FR protection and comfort.”
May 13, 2014