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Barkat Acquires Haber

Brent Felgner -- Home Textiles Today, June 19, 2006

New York —Barkat, the U.S. import arm of one of the three largest mills in Pakistan, has completed the $30 million acquisition of Dallas-based converter Haber Fabrics Corp., the company said late last week.

The all-cash acquisition involved Haber's assets but none of its debt, said Barry Marks, vp, sales and marketing for Barkat. It brings Barkat a 300,000-square-foot distribution center combined with doubling and folding operations. More important, it buys expanded warehousing, access to major accounts and the possibility of an additional port of entry through Houston, he said.

“This positions us much better to serve and expand our account base throughout the country, at the same time removing the middleman,” Marks said in a telephone interview.

Haber's products are sold through large accounts including Wal-Mart, Jo-Ann, and Hancock Fabrics. Barkat's parent, Fateh Group, was the major supplier to Haber, Marks said. Barkat currently operates an 80,000-square-foot warehouse in North Brunswick, N.J.

Barkat executive vp and director of U.S. operations Dr. Al Larik will oversee the Haber business.

Haber, according to its Web site, is a principal supplier of fleece, trigger, cotton solids and print fabrics, including faux fur and a variety of promotional lines. It is a 40-year-old, family-owned company that was in the midst of a difficult period of succession, according to Marks, which helped create the buying opportunity.

Barkat, whose business is focused on sheets and comforters, is wholly owned by the Fateh Group of Hyderabad, Pakistan, a large vertically integrated mill, doing its own spinning, weaving, printing, cut and sew, finishing and other functions on a 57-acre facility employing 15,000 workers.

Fateh also has offices in London, Frankfurt, Hong Kong and Switzerland. It also has a garment, a motorbike and a commodities trading division. Fateh has been publicly traded since 1952 on the Karachi Stock Exchange.

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