Recession forces many technical textile companies to shed non-core businesses.
The technical textiles market works its way back to prerecession production.
With a great selection of materials available, fabric structures adapt to different climates and project needs.
Advancements include repellent coatings, nanotechnology and intelligent textiles.
Tent projects show off their creativity, reach for new heights and get big results.
Fabric graphics in interior settings can take an office, hospitality or retail space from average to amazing.
EDANA has released a public summary of its annual statistics.
GraphExeter could revolutionize wearable electronics and increase efficiency of solar panels.
The increasing versatility and functionality of nonwoven fabrics is expanding their market reach with new technologies and new applications.
Lessons learned from smart phone success can be applied to e-textile development.
Fabric interiors are flexible and functional, artistic and adaptable, economical and ecologically sound, offering new advantages to designers and architects.
Marine fabricators discover how working together has benefits for both.
Conformable, wireless electronic laminates offer a new approach to sensors in garments.
Fabric companies committed to recycling give testimony to long-term success.
Military and government entities rely on fabric products for highly specialized uses, but budget cutbacks have prompted market adjustments.
In an IFAI business climate survey, three factors constraining growth in the U.S. specialty fabrics market were mentioned: high raw material costs, overseas competition, and high oil/energy prices. From September –December 2008, high raw material and petroleum-related prices were exacerbated by tighter credit markets and record unemployment.
Survey respondents reported some positive factors: increasing market share due to increased consolidation, greater export opportunities, and development of new technology and growth in eco-friendly green markets. Growth markets include medical textiles, military applications, safety and protective products, and the domestic and international use of geosynthetics.
Increases in raw material and energy costs, increased labor costs and medical insurance premiums and the possible long-term shrinkage of the military market were mentioned as threats to growth. The poor economy means a weak U.S. dollar, tighter credit and reduced consumer buying. Overcapacity could be a problem, due to increased costs, decreased customer demand and global competition, especially from China and India.
In response, suppliers will focus on high value products, profitable niche markets and product diversification, improving manufacturing processes, R&D and information technology. Advertising, marketing and sales promotion will be key.
From the 2009 State of the Industry Report. Purchase a complete report at the IFAI Bookstore.