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Dan River To Exit US Manufacturing

Dan River Inc., Danville, Va., will cease operation of its Brookneal, Va., bedsheet and pillowcase finishing and fabrication plant. The home textiles producer and marketer, acquired by India-based Gujarat Heavy Chemicals Ltd. in January 2006, stated the "highly competitive and extremely price-conscious retail environment in which the company must operate" has forced it to source its manufacturing elsewhere.

Brookneal, Dan River's last remaining manufacturing plant in the United States, employs some 280 people. The company also employs 400 to 500 US administrative, sales and marketing, distribution, warehousing and assembly associates, said Calvin Barnhardt, vice president - human resources.

Barnhardt said the company is in talks with at least one potential buyer for the plant, with the hope it would continue as an ongoing enterprise. If a sale is not negotiated, Dan River will begin closing the facility on August 22, with expectations of completing the shutdown in the third quarter of 2006.

"We would prefer to sell it as an ongoing operation," Barnhardt said. "We're very hopeful we'll be able to do that. It would be a win/win not only for the company, but also for the employees at the plant and for the city of Brookneal."

July/August 2006