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Central Textiles Expands Into Former Mayfair Plant

CENtrAL TEXTILES EXPANDS INTO FORMER MAYFAIR PLANTIn a welcome bit of good news for the reeling textile industry, Central Textiles bought a Pickens, S.C., plant closed by Mayfair Mills in August and reopened it in mid October to manufacture greige fabric.Mayfair filed for Chapter 11 protection in August and closed its remaining three plants, including the Pickens Plant. Central Textiles paid a little more than $2 million for the plant and rehired 200 of its former employees."We could have easily backed away from the deal in light of the Sept. 11 tragedy," says James McKinnon, Central Textiles president. "But we have deep roots in America and we wanted to hire some Americans."Family-owned Cotswold Industries owns Central Textiles. Malcolm McKinnon, James McKinnons grandfather, founded Cotswold in 1954. Cotswold bought the Central plant from Cannon Mills in 1983.Central manufactures pocketing fabric for apparel markets and workwear fabrics. Centrals industrial products include scrims going into wallcovering, substrates for vinyl coatings, medical fabrics and military spec fabrics.Last May, Cotswold acquired assets from Thomaston Mills career apparel operation including its customer list, inventory and sales force.The Pickens facility will be Cotswolds second U.S. textile plant. Cotswold also operates a cut-and-sew plant in Columbus, Ga., and a joint venture textile mill and finishing plant in Puebla, Mexico."Were a very old-school, quiet company," McKinnon says. "Weve had a lot of luck and our business is good. This company operates on little to zero debt."McKinnon says the Pickens Plant is equipped to meet current needs, but will eventually be modernized. He describes Central Textiles as a "state-of-the-art" mill with all equipment installed since 1995.November 2001