Fabric sources Burlington Technologies, Bentex Mills merge
Cindy W. Hodnett -- Furniture Today, October 5, 2012
BURLINGTON, N.C. — Upholstery fabric manufacturer Burlington Technologies has announced a merger with Bentex Mills, a Greensboro, N.C.-based weaver that primarily serves the contract fabric market, providing products for health care, hospitality and office furnishings.
Bentex will operate as a separate division of Burlington Technologies, according to Michael Durham, Burlington's president and CEO.
"We are merging our capabilities and resources," he said. "The product design, quality, sales and marketing will remain the same as it is today."
Other Burlington Technologies business units are BMS, its yarn-dying operations; Se7en, residential decorative fabrics; and Gryphon Seams, cut and sewn products and services. It also has affiliate companies including VitaFlex, which produces patented stretchable nonwoven fabrics, and Diagnostic Chips, an intellectual properties company.
Durham said the Bentex partnership will provide new strategic capabilities, operating synergies and expanded market opportunities for both companies.
"The alliance has major implications for all of our associated business segments," Durham said in a statement. "The benefits to both residential and contract customers will be a combined company that has a more diverse and broader set of capabilities in areas like manufacturing expertise and equipment, design prowess, yarn toolbox and product offerings. A broader company is a stronger company positioned for growth and stability in the future, yet we want to retain capabilities like speed and flexibility that both of our customer bases demand."
Bentex owner Ernest Benbassat has been named the executive vice president of fabric manufacturing and will continue as president of the Bentex division. Benbassat said that Burlington Technologies' facilities, capabilities, and raw material supply will accelerate Bentex's opportunity to grow in volume, breadth of product mix, and service to its customers.
Durham said that North American textile customers are once again concentrating on domestic suppliers and that the partnership between the two companies addresses the needs of a shifting market.
"The offshore pricing advantages for small lot sizes and/or sophisticated weavers are fast disappearing," he said. "And now customers are taking a closer look at things like Intellectual property protection, product quality, inventories and reliable delivery."