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Model Mill Brazil39 S Santista Textil

Daniel Garcia Reyes, Brazilian Correspondent,

  Textiles Panamericanos Model Mill: Brazil's Santista Textil Santista Textil is investing in modern technology for the export of high-quality products. Santista Textil is the only Brazilian multinational company in the textile sector, and it is the largest exporter of canvas and denim in the country, having as its main market the United States and South American countries.The company also is one of the five largest producers of denim fabric in the world, and its external consolidated sales represent about 50 percent of its annual net income. In addition, Santista is the largest exporter of textiles made in Chile and Argentina, countries in which it also has mills.The company, which was founded in 1994, resulted from the merger of two very traditional Brazilian companies: SPaulo Alpargatas (Fabric Division), founded in 1907, and Santista Textil, in operation since 1929.Nowadays, the control of Santista Textil, a publicly traded company negotiating its shares at BOVESPA, SPaulos Stock Exchange, is shared by SPaulo Alpargatas, 45 percent; Bunge Group, 45 percent; and Bradesco Bank, 10 percent. Santista Textil is the main manufacturer of denim fabric for jeans fashions, and the leader within The Common Market of the South (MERCOSUR) a free-market association among Brazil, Argentina, Paraguay and Uruguay in the market of professional uniforms.

Partial view of the modern textile plant of Santista Textil, in the city of Americana, Brazil Producing its fabric in eight plants five in Brazil, one in Chile and two in Argentina the company employs about 5,000 people. In Brazil, three plants are situated in the state of SPaulo and the other two in northeastern states. The Chilean plant is located in Chigayante; and in Argentina, plants are in Tucuman and Santiago del Estero. Big Cotton ConsumerSantista, one of the main consumers of cotton in the MERCOSUR trading market, is responsible for about 10 percent of the regional usage of this fiber. Aiming to enhance the quality of its fibers and, consequently, the quality of its fabrics, Santista Textil has collaborated in the improvement of cotton seeds, giving support to research developed by important institutions in the state of Mato Grosso, one of the main producers of high-quality cotton in Brazil.From 1996 to 2000, Santistas per-capita net income grew 56 percent, while its per-capita aggregate value was doubled. Invoices in 2001 totaled approximately US$328 million.To obtain positive results and continue its internalization programs, the company has made investments in modernization, cost reduction and business expansion in the international markets.From 1994 to 2001, investment in these areas totaled about $200 million, resulting in a technological upgrading of approximately 85 percent.Part of the investment was applied to specific programs, enabling all of its factories in Brazil and Argentina to obtain ISO-9001 certification, and three factories in Brazil to be ISO-14001-certified.The company is committed to conservation of the environment and sees environmental management as a priority in all its activities, products and services. This environmental commitment prompted the Brazilian Association of Textile Industries (ABIT) to award Santista Textil with the ABIT Fashion Award in the Environment category. Santista Creates The Innovatech ConceptThe mill located in the state of Pernambuco in northeastern Brazil was totally remodeled during the last year. Not only did it receive new equipment, systems and processes, but it also installed an advanced Murata Vortex Spinning (MVS) system. The Pernambuco mill specializes in 100-percent cotton canvas and cotton/polyester-blend greige fabrics for professional uniforms. 
Ultra-modern spinning room in a Santista Textil plantFabrics following the Innovatech concept, officially launched by the company at the end of last year, are also produced there. They consist of products with an antibacterial finish, protection against ultraviolet (UV) rays and blends of cotton with recycled polyethylene terephthalate (PET).The Innovatech concept of fabrics for professional uniforms involves an antibacterial finish that protects the fabric against the proliferation of odor-causing bacteria from perspiration. It is inoffensive, does not provoke allergies, and provides a greater sensation of comfort, contributing also to the extension of the useful life of the uniform, as can be proved through AATCC Standard 147, explained Rasso von Reininghaus, director of Santistas Workwear business unit. A second fabric finish protects the wearer against UV radiation. The fabric, moreover, is manufactured from cotton and polyester obtained through the recycling of PET bottles. Reininghaus emphasizes that this kind of fabric is environmentally friendly and durable, and represents Santistas contribution to societys effort to recycle materials and protect the environment.The polyester fiber is produced from recycling of the most diverse types of PET bottles, of different colors and consistencies. Santista has developed a process that permits the standardizing of raw material, a critical factor for recycled raw material.As soon as this initial challenge was resolved, the company adapted all the productive processes, from spinning to dyeing and fabric finishing, achieving a product of superior quality, according to the company. Sergipe PlantThe plant in Sergipe, a state in northeastern Brazil, specializes in adding finishing to workwear. The finishing of 100-percent cotton canvas and cotton/polyester blends is performed there, and the plant is undergoing a huge technological and industrial restructuring, which will result in production of fabrics using differentiated finishing and new dyeing processes, among other improvements.According to Reininghaus, the workwear sector in Brazil will continue to grow this year, with innovations related to fabrics and different styles as a result of the companys Innovatech concept. Also new within this business unit is Projeto Foco (Focus Project), initiated at the beginning of this year, which focuses through segments of action on the specialization of manufacturing companies working exclusively with Santista fabrics.We always try to encourage the growth of homologous manufacturing companies, with excellence and total quality, said Reininghaus. "Intelligent" FabricsSantista produces intelligent fabrics, demonstrating the companys preoccupation with the comfort of the user and respect of the environment.Since October of last year, the employees of Fiat do Brasil have been wearing more comfortable and modern uniforms that provide them with more security and comfort. The new styles were chosen by the employees of Fiat after an internal vote that also identified dissatisfaction with the old uniforms, which were hot and uncomfortable, limited arm and leg movements, wore out quickly and were out of style. Hamdan, a company that uses fabrics from Santista Textil, manufactured the new garments. With this new line of uniforms manufactured for Fiat, the company has officially launched the Innovatech concept of fabrics for workwear. Latest NewsJune 5 saw the latest launching of Santista Textil, the Linha Vestis (Vestis Line), which offers manufacturers fabrics with a maximum weight of 200 grams per square meter (g/m2) of Brazilian or Egyptian cotton blended with elastane, polyamide, Tencel®, polyester and linen; and even sophisticated blends with metal wires. This new line of products demonstrates the effort of Santista Textil in searching for innovations and exclusivity of offering, a differential that underlines all the companys actions in Brazilian and international markets, emphasized Vicente Moliterno, director, Jeanswear. Interview With Herbert SchmidIn an interview given exclusively to Textiles Panamericanos during the launching of the new product line, Herbert Schmid, president of the company, said Santista is investing 18 million dollars to produce light fabrics to be used in the manufacture of womens, mens and childrens apparel and shirts, and as substitutes for imports.We have been using the most recent technologies and equipment, which exist only in First-World countries, and with this production we will substitute for the imports that our clients were using to provide the characteristics of differentiation, exclusivity and innovation that consumers demand. We have almost completed the building of a new plant at the Tatui mill in SPaulo, and we are finishing a cycle that required investments of more than $160 million over eight years, said Schmid.Schmid concluded his statements by emphasizing a new line of fabrics offered to the market solutions that offer economy of time, differentiation and exclusive patterns, according to the needs of each customer.  August 2002