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Trident Will Expand into Bedding, Rugs

Ludhiana, India — Towel manufacturer Trident/Abhishek Industries plans to expand into sheeting — the first step in a process to broaden its product categories and become a one-stop shop by 2008.

The company this year will build a new plant capable of producing more than 1 million meters of fabric per day. Trident will produce cotton and blended sheets in solid and printed finishes. Production should come on line in early 2007.

Thereafter, it will push into construction on a bath and area rug production facility, according to the mill. Trident said it might also consider an acquisition in the rug area.

At the same time, Trident continues to boost its towel capacity — a strategy it has been pursing in several stages over nearly three years.

The mill recently completed a terry toweling expansion that pumped up capacity from 7.3 million pieces per month to 10 million. In the third phase of the project, Trident will add 100 looms over the course of this year as well as a matching preparatory/processing house and finishing capacity. Last year, Trident said its aim was to become one of the top five terry towel manufacturers in the world. The 12-year-old conglomerate does more than $150 million in sales annually in terry towels, yarn, paper and chemicals. Trident's vertically integrated towel mill — Abhishek Industries Ltd. — produces solids, jacquards, beach, sublistatic prints, sets and specialty towels.

Trident also is licensed to use the Supima and Egyptian Cotton logos, and has been certified by Oekotex, Switzerland, whose testing standard certifies products carry no trace elements of harmful substances used during production.

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