Fabric Mills

Industry Profile Report

Dive Deep into the industry with a 25+ page industry report (pdf format) including the following chapters

Industry Overview Current Conditions, Industry Structure, How Firms Operate, Industry Trends, Credit Underwriting & Risks, and Industry Forecast.

Call Preparation Call Prep Questions, Industry Terms, and Weblinks.

Financial Insights Working Capital, Capital Financing, Business Valuation, and Financial Benchmarks.

Industry Profile Excerpts

Industry Overview

The 735 fabric mills in the US transform yarn or fibers into fabric that is further manufactured into usable items, such as apparel, sheets, or towels. Major product categories include nonwoven fabrics, broadwoven fabrics, knit fabrics, and narrow fabrics. Almost half of US textile output is used for technical applications, such as conveyor belts and automotive floor coverings. About 40% of output goes towards home textiles and floor coverings. Apparel accounts for just over 10% of US textile output.

High Capital Requirements

The US fabric mill industry is highly capital-intensive and requires a significant investment in plants, property, and equipment.

Competition From Foreign Manufacturers

Overseas textile production has decimated the US fabric manufacturing industry.

Industry size & Structure

The average fabric mill operates out of a single location, employs 61-62 workers, and generates about $17-18 million annually.

    • The textile mill industry includes fiber, yarn, and thread mills; fabric mills; and textile and fabric finishing and coating mills. Fabric mills may be vertically integrated and perform operations within the textile supply chain in addition to fabric production.
    • The fabric mill industry consists of about 735 companies that employ 45,300 workers and generate $13 billion annually.
    • Nonwoven fabric mills account for about 26% of companies and 55% of industry revenue; broadwoven fabric mills for 34% of companies and 28% of revenue; knit fabric mills for 17% of companies and 10% of revenue; and narrow fabric mills and schiffli machine mills for 23% of companies and 7% of revenue.
    • The average nonwoven fabric mill employs about 90 workers and generates $37 million annually; the average broadwoven mill about 63 workers and $14 million annually; the average knit fabric mill about 48 workers and $10 million annually; and the average narrow fabric mill about 34 workers and $5.8 million annually.
    • The industry is concentrated; the top 50 companies account for 66% of industry revenue.
    • Large companies with fabric mill operations include Elevate Textiles (Burlington), Milleken, and Albany International. Large firms may have operations in foreign countries.
    • US textile production is primarily located in southeastern states and Pennsylvania. One third of all textile jobs were located in Georgia and North Carolina in 2019.
                              Industry Forecast
                              Fabric Mills Industry Growth
                              Source: Vertical IQ and Inforum

                              Recent Developments

                              Mar 10, 2023 - Manufacturing Activity Contracts in February
                              • US manufacturing activity contracted in February 2023, falling below the baseline for growth for the fourth consecutive month, according to the Institute for Supply Management’s Manufacturing ISM Report on Business. The Manufacturing PMI registered 47.7 in February, a slight change from the 47.4 recorded in January. A reading above 50% indicates manufacturing expansion. In February, the ISM’s Purchasing Managers Index (PMI) fell to 47.4%, down from 48.4% in January. February’s New Orders Index remained in the contraction zone at 47%. The February Production Index decreased slightly to 47.3%. Of the manufacturing industries tracked by the ISM, four reported growth in February: Apparel, Leather & Allied Products; Transportation Equipment; Petroleum & Coal Products; and Electrical Equipment, Appliances & Components. Fourteen sectors reported contraction, including Computer & Electronic Products, Fabricated Metal Products, Nonmetallic Mineral Products, Plastics & Rubber Products, Primary Metals, Textile Mills, and Wood Products.
                              • Import cargo volume at major US container ports is expected to slowly begin climbing again after a recent low point in February 2023, according to the Global Port Tracker report in Textile World. The report, released by the National Retail Federation and Hackett Associates, is forecasting the import figures in March to be 1.74 million twenty-foot container equivalent units (TEU), 1.87 million TEU in April, 1.92 million TEU in May, 2 million TEU in June, and 2.1 million TEU In July. According to Jonathan Gold, NRF vice president for supply chain and customs policy, “There are many uncertainties about the economy, but we expect imports to show modest gains over the next several months. Growth is a positive sign, but levels are still far below normal and retailers will remain cautious as they work to keep inventories in line with consumer demand.”
                              • High inventories at the brand and retail level are a core problem facing the textile supply chain in 2023, according to the latest ITMF Global Textile Industry Survey reported in Textile World. Consumers spent heavily when the global economy began to reopen after the COVID crisis. With demand soaring, brands and retailers increased orders to meet the pent-up demand. However, with inflation rising, demand for consumer goods slowed while inventories remained very high. According to the survey, participants confirmed that order intake has continuously decreased since November 2021. The indicator was negative in January 2023 for all regions and segments except for North and Central America and fiber producers. Global order backlogs steadily decreased from 3.1 months in March 2022 to 2.4 months in January 2023 due to brand and retailers’ restraint in placing orders. Survey participants were globally optimistic about business in June 2023, primarily due to a better energy environment and the end of the zero-COVID policy in China.
                              • Exports of textiles and apparel from the US increased by 11% from January to November 2022, according to data from the Office of Textiles and Apparel, as reported by Fibre2Fashion. The value of exports was $23 billion during the period compared to $20.7 billion in the same period in 2021. Looking at the exports by category, apparel exports grew by 22.7% year over year to $6.8 billion, yarn and fabric exports increased by 18.7% and 3.6% to $4 billion and $8 billion, respectively, and made-up and miscellaneous articles increased by 2.5% to nearly $4 billion. More than half of the total US textile and clothing exports are shipped to Mexico (27%) and Canada (24%). The US textile and clothing export value in recent years has ranged from $22-25 billion, with a dip to $19.3 billion in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
                              Get A Demo

                              Vertical IQ’s Industry Intelligence Platform

                              See for yourself why over 60,000 users trust Vertical IQ for their industry research and call preparation needs. Our easy-to-digest industry insights save call preparation time and help differentiate you from the competition.

                              Build valuable, lasting relationships by having smarter conversations -
                              check out Vertical IQ today.

                              Request A Demo