VF makes acquisition
Greensboro, NC — VF Corp. has expanded its cleanroom-related business with the acquisition of Fibrotek, a Colorado-based manufacturer of reusable cleanroom garments.
Fibrotek will become part of VF`s Workwear coalition, which was recently formed to support the company`s presence in the growing occupational/protective apparel market sector. The coalition consists of three other VF marketing units: Red Kap Industries (Nashville, TN) — the unit under which VF initially entered the cleanroom market about a year and half ago; Bulwark Protective Apparel (Nashville, TN); and Penn State Textiles (King of Prussia, PA).
Reid Pranka, who is charged with developing cleanroom and ESD initiatives at Red Kap Industries, says coalition members will operate as independent brands, each with its own president. Robert Matthews, former Red Kap president, will take over as president of the Workwear coalition, while VF`s John Schamberger will serve as its chairman.
Red Kap`s cleanroom and ESD operations will gradually be transferred to Fibrotek, explains Susan Routt, who — as part of the purchasing agreement — will continue to serve as president of the company. Fibrotek produces hoods, coveralls, frocks, boots, shoes, lab coats, site wear and accessory items for use in all classes of cleanrooms in its 20,000-square-foot manufacturing facility in Long Mont, CO.
The partnership follows an emerging trend that has groups of cleanroom service providers finding strength in numbers through mergers and acquisitions (see “Service companies form Pentagon,” CleanRooms, January 1999; “Dy namix alliance targets wiper users” and “Filter industry veterans form employee-friendly distributorship,” CleansRooms, March 1999).