Tex-ray plans for TTP by building Vietnam factory

By Camaron Kao  /  Staff reporter

Wed, Oct 16, 2013 - Page 13

Apparel maker Tex-ray Industrial Co Ltd (南緯實業) yesterday said it is building a factory in Vietnam to produce between 80,000 dozen and 100,000 dozen garments a month, eyeing the possibility for the country to enjoy zero-tariff garment exports to the US after Vietnam joins the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP).

The new factory, which is set to be operational in the first quarter of next year, will increase the company’s capacity in Vietnam to between 110,000 dozen and 130,000 dozen a month and its total capacity to between 480,000 dozen and 500,000 dozen a month, the company said.

Tex-ray, which makes apparel for global fashion brands, such as Nike and Alfred Dunner, said it is constructing the new factory because between 60 and 70 percent of its sales are to US clients.

The company also has a plant in Swaziland with the capacity to produce 141,000 dozen garments a month and a plant in Mexico with the capacity to produce 30,000 dozen garments a month. Both plants can export to the US tariff-free because of the US’ African Growth and Opportunity Act and North American Free Trade Agreement, the company said.

“Nevertheless, we still position our department to develop functional fabrics in Taiwan because of the technology and research capacity in the nation, which is higher than China and Vietnam,” said Simon Fan (范振超), the company’s president of fabric headquarters.

The company reported revenue of NT$5.48 billion (US$190 million) from January through last month, up 3.69 percent from NT$5.29 billion the previous year.

“We expect this year’s performance to be better than last year,” Fan said.

Another Taiwanese textile maker that is set to benefit from Vietnam’s growing economy is Singtex Industrial Co Ltd (興采實業), as the supplier of functional fabrics said yesterday it has also signed a 10-year lease for a factory there with the capacity of making 30,000 dozen garments per month, starting this month.

“We plan to open 12 production lines and hire 600 to 700 people,” Singtex chairman Jason Chen (陳國欽) said.

The factory will start contributing to the company’s revenue starting next year, he said.

Chen said the company will post revenue growth of at least 15 percent this year, benefiting from the strong growth of of its S.Cafe division, which weaves waste coffee grounds into interlaced fibers to create textiles with fast-drying properties, UV protection and odor control.

In the first nine months of the year, the company posted revenue of NT$1.11 billion, up 18.77 percent from NT$937.21 million a year earlier.

Sales of the company’s S.Cafe division, which account for 25 percent of its revenue, grew 35 percent during the nine-month period year-on-year, Chen said.

Currently selling its coffee-yarn in Taiwan, China, Japan and the US, Singtex launched the strategic alliance “SPIIN” in Shanghai, China, last month to seek more partners around the world to use its coffee-yarn to make clothes.